Ireland is currently experiencing a warm and dry spell of weather that has left the countryside exposed to a high risk of fire, according to Bord na Mona.

Fire puts the lives of the people who have to fight them at risk, as well as causing major damage to property, wild life and habitats. Bord na Móna and the Fire Service reminds the public that it is illegal to set fires in growing vegetation between March 1 and August 28.

Fires in the countryside can start easily and spread rapidly and pose a threat to peoples lives, homes and property. These fires are also responsible for the deaths of many species of wildlife.

To deal with the risk over 60 Bord na Móna employees have volunteered for a fire watch programme to help with the early detection and combatting of countryside fires.

Bord na Móna is also reminding everyone enjoying the outdoors to refrain from lighting fires and to take care when disposing of lit cigarettes or other similar materials. It also asks that anyone witnessing a fire on any area of bog or peatland to immediately alert the Gardaí and the Fire Service.