Department issues ‘high forest fire risk warning’

The Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine has issued a Condition Orange forest fire danger warning.

The warning is valid from today, Monday, May 13, at 12:00pm until Friday, May 17, at 12:00pm.

According to a statement from the department, the warning comes as a result of current high pressure easterly weather conditions that are forecast over the coming week.

The warning is relevant to “all areas where hazardous fuels such as gorse, heather, dried grasses and other dead vegetation exists”.

The statement noted that the fire risk is likely to be highest in westerly areas.

All forest owners and managers have been advised by the department “to prepare for likely outbreaks of fire”.

The statement advised that fire lines, fire plans and fire suppression equipment should be reviewed and made ready.

Clear tracks should be available and forest owners or managers should ensure that forest entrances are not blocked by parked vehicles or other obstacles.

The need for increased vigilance at this time cannot be overstated.

Members of the public and all visitors to recreational areas have been advised to cooperate with all requests regarding fire safety.

If a member of the public happens to spot a fire, they have been advised not to intervene in fighting the fire under any circumstances.

Instead, they should dial 112 and report the fire and its location.