United Kingdom Fire and Rescue Services Dealing With Spate of Wildfires
After a sustained period of warm weather, Firefighters from England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland have spent many hours tackling wildland fires across the United Kingdom.
In Lancashire, Firefighters continue to battle a wildfire that has been raging for five days. Today Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service (LFRS) have reported that 22 fire appliances and crew are committed to the operation on Winter Hill which started on 28 June.
Two fires merged resulting in the declaration of a major incident such has been the demand for resources along with the threat to critical communication masts on Saturday.
In addition, the heritage risk from the fire to the Grade II-listed Rivington Terraced Gardens has seen staff valiantly working to protect their grounds which received £3.4m of lottery funding two years ago for improvements.
Yesterday the crew of Firefighting helicopter spotted two people lighting further fires in the area and Police were dispatched to the scene. This followed the arrest of a 22-year-old man, from Bolton, who was arrested on 29 June on suspicion of arson with intent to endanger life. The man has currently been released and is under investigation.
The Winter Hill fire is particularly difficult to extinguish due to the terrain and heavy peat base. As well as the fire spread across the tinder-dry vegetation above ground, peat smoulders and can often be unseen beneath the surface.
Fire and Rescue Services are advising caution from the public in preventing fires and asking that people stay away from fire scenes where sightseers may put their own health at risk as well as hampering firefighting operations.
Elsewhere, Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Services have had support from both neighbouring Services and the military with Soldiers working alongside Firefighters tackling a wildfire on Saddleworth Moor.
Image for illustration purposes. Picture from Delabole Fire Station, CFRS.