Thursday, March 01, 2018

Kerry Fire Rescue Service fighting bog fire

The spring season is used every year in Kerry and other parts of the country to burn goarse on fields, mountains and bogland. The last two weeks were exceptionally dry and wherever you went you would see smoking hills and farmland. I am not the person to judge the efficiency of this undertaking and if I´m asking local people they tell me it was always a custom here.
However, I see the impact on the air quality and I have witnessed what happened when upcoming winds make fires uncontrollable. People have lost their property, ancient woodlands have burnt down and people have died as a result of these fires. The state has to use hundreds of thousands of Euros of taxpayers money to maintain and improve the local Fire and Rescue teams and their infrastructure.
I do not know if this type of thermal plant control is practiced in other European countries, but I believe it has do be stopped by the local authorities with the help of the Irish Government.
Last night I witnessed a substantial bog fire near my home, with 3 fire engines and members of Kerry Fire and Rescue Service teams from Sneem, Killarney and our local station in Cahersiveen. There was a danger that a nearby forest would catch fire and would be destroyed.
The photographs were all taken after 10pm, which means that none of the fire fighters were in bed before 2am. I spoke to one member of the Sneem group and when he told me where he came from I asked him "Is there no fire in Sneem tonight?" His answer was:"No, there are living law abiding people in Sneem". I hope one day we can say that about the Cahersiveen area as well.
Thank you to all members of Kerry Fire and Rescue teams that came out to fight and destroy this fire at Raheen bog, Ballinskelligs.
©Michael Herrmann