Ireland — Firefighters tackling a forest fire half a mile from the Corribgas terminal in Bellanaboy had to return to the scene yesterday (Monday) morningafter the fire blazed up again just hours after it was thought to be undercontrol. The fire broke out in the Collite-owned forest close to the Glenamoy river atfive oclock on Sunday evening and three units of the fire service fromBelmullet, Crossmolina and Ballina were called out to tackle the blaze. The fire units fought the blaze until close to midnight on Sunday beforebringing the fire under control. However, in the morning Coillte forestofficials called the fire brigade again after the fire started to re-ignite ataround ten oclock, but the flames were soon brought under control and twofire units remained at the scene to ensure the fire did not blaze up again. The Chief Fire Officer in Mayo, Mr Seamus Murphy, told The Mayo News on Mondayafternoon that they had no idea how the fire started but it is believedthe dry conditions are likely to have caused the blaze which has causedextensive damage to the forest. He added that the fire brigade would wait at thescene because there were still hot spots and there was a genuine fear thefire would re-ignite. Vegetation is very dry and there is a risk that some hot spots might re-ignite.We have no idea at the moment how the fire could have started and there are 101ways it could have started. But I would like to advise people who are in foreststo be extremely careful with cigarettes because the smallest thing could start afire in these dry conditions. Mr Murphy explained that no houses were in danger from the blaze but Shell toSea spokesman, Mr John Monaghan, said the fire was too close for comfortand highlighted the danger of building a highly combustible terminal inthe middle of a forest. He said that there was a lot of smoke from the fire andfelt they were lucky the conditions were calm because if there was a breeze, thefire would have got out of control. Meanwhile, an information evening hosted by RPS, the independent consultantsemployed by the Corrib Gas Partners to find a new modified route for the Corribonshore gas pipeline, will take place this evening (Tuesday) in the BroadhavenBay Hotel in Belmullet. The purpose of the event is to outline the pipelinecorridor options and over 200 registered landowners have been invited to attend. A statement from RPS Director, Mr PJ Rudden, stated that they were seeking inputfrom the community before making a full evaluation and would carry out ashort-list of the preferred route corridors to honour the recommendations issuedby Mr Peter Cassells. However, a spokesperson for Shell to Sea said the RPSprocess was too little and did not take into account other design aspectsof the project.
The latest arrest as a result of ongoing clashes between protestors and gardaíover the Corrib gas project took place late on Monday evening. One man was arrested at Pullathomas Pier after an altercation when a group ofprotestors confronted Shell contractors who were attempting to locate a securitycabin at the pier. There was a series of running scuffles and gardaí and protestors clashed as thecabin was being put in place. The man who was arrested was taken to BelmulletGarda Station. The cabin is to be used by a boat crew which has been contracted to undertake aseabed survey in the area as part of Shell Irelands attempts to find a newroute for an onshore pipeline linking its offshore well to a 200 millionrefinery at Bellanaboy.