Forest fires brought under control

Forest fires brought under control

22 April 2007

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Ireland — Some of the worst forest and bog fires for years have been brought under control, the Fire Service said today.

With the help of heavy overnight rain more than 20 blazes in Connacht, Leinster and Ulster were put out saving acres of woodland and peat bogs.

But it is feared the fires have caused significant damage to wildlife.

The blazes broke out in tinder dry countryside which has seen little or no rain in the last month and the Fire Service said they were probably started by people burning gorse off the land.

The most badly affected areas were the south and east of Co Galway including the Peterswell area, between Gort and Loughrea, where a large state forest wastackled.

At one point every available fire unit in Gort, Loughrea, Portumna, Athenry and Tuam was involved in controlling the blaze.

Other incidents were reported on the Carlow/Wexford border were a large forest fire on Mount Leinster was brought under control.

A bog near Hackettstown in Co Carlow was also badly damaged along with a State-owned forestry site near Scotstown in Co Monaghan.

Further rain is expected to move across the country later day and overnight into Monday.

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