Limerick City and County Fire and Rescue Service is urging landowners not to carry out any burning of land this weekend as there is a Red Fire Alert in operation. Members of the public are also being warned of the dangers of starting fires in areas near gorse or scrubland as it is tinder dry at present.
Wildfires can put homes and livelihoods at risk and cause considerable disruption to rural communities and habitats. Such disturbances to rural dwellers, including those who are old and vulnerable cannot be allowed under any circumstances.
The issue is exacerbated as the country is also dealing with Covid-19 and the demands this pandemic is putting on the emergency services.
If someone should start an illegal fire in the countryside this will cause the unnecessary diversions of emergency service resources.
If you burn land between the 01 March and 31 August:
- You risk prosecution, fines and potential imprisonment
- Such land will no longer be eligible for payment under the Basic Payment Scheme and other area-based schemes
- Inclusion of illegally burnt land in the 2020 Basic Payment Scheme application may result in reduced payment and penalties under this scheme and the other area-based schemes, e.g. Areas of Natural Constraints Scheme
- Illegal burning can also render the land of your neighbours ineligible for payment
- Where it is identified that lands were burnt during the closed season this may result in such land being inspected by Department officials
If you see a fire, do not delay; report it to the Fire and Emergency Services straight away. Do not wait for somebody else to make the call. Dial 999 or 112.