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Forestry Department on ‘red alert’ over forest fires as temperatures soar

July 4, 2018 at 9:24am
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With temperatures soaring as a heat wave grips the island, the Forestry Department has issued an urgent appeal to everyone to be particularly careful and avoid any actions that may lead to fires.

In an announcement, it said that it had raised its readiness to ‘red alert’ levels.

A number of fires have already been caused from cigarettes, sparks from machinery and the use of fire from various activities in the countryside.

It is stressed that the burning of dry grass, branches and rubbish is forbidden, while the use in the countryside of tools or agricultural equipment that create sparks such as welding tools must be be avoided.

Special care must also be be given to preventive measures to avoid fires resulting from electricity generators or water pumps in the countryside. Owners and users are urged to ensure they have taken all the necessary preventative measures, such as clearing the area from dry grass and other flammable material. They should also make sure the exhaust pipe is in good condition and ends up in ditch.

Anyone who spots smoke or fire in or near a forest is urgent to immediately contact the nearest forestry station or to call 1407 (Forestry Department) or 122 (Fire Service).