Updated: 08/05/17 : 06:15:11
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Latest Sligo fire brought under control yesterday

Sligo Fire Service has confirmed that the fires which ravaged the Ox Mountains in Co Sligo have been successfully contained. Fire crews, with the aid of the Army, completed the task yesterday evening.

The Army helicopter was invaluable in the task as the biggest challenge faced by the fire crews was gaining access to the area of the fires as they were deep in the Moy Forest between Lough Easkey and Lough Talt, a great distance from any road.

On Saturday the helicopter continuously dropped 'Bambi' buckets of waters. During the operation 37 drops of 1,300 litres of water were carried out, totalling at 48,100 litres.

A private helicopter has been hired by Coillte to monitor the situation and deal with any isoleted pockets of fire that may reignite. Coillte own the forestry and some of the open mountain.

Tubbercurry Fire Service are still monitoring the situation.

The fire in Easkey destroying mature and young forests. Photo: Twitter

The Irish Air Corps joined forces with a number of local fire crews quench the Ox Mountain fires
                                                Video: Irish Air Corp shown on Irish Independent

 The Army helicopter delivering another 'Bambi' bucket onto the Easkey fire.
Photo: Irish Air Corp

The fire was the latest in a series of such incidents that affected Sligo over the past week.

Earlier in the week, Wednesday. there were major outbreaks on Killery mountain near Ballintogher, on the Sligo/Leitrim which destroyed forests and wildlife. See link below.

On Friday, fires in the Geevagh/Ballyfarnon region were fought by firefighters from Ballymote and Boyle who managed to contain the blaze by 11pm that night.

In Donegal, gorse fires have also been reported.

Meanwhile in Co Down, the Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) have also battled a large number of gorse fires at the weekend.

"Since 1 May, we have dealt with 460 gorse-related incidents, 80% of these have been as a result of deliberate ignition," a NIFRS spokesperson said.

"We are currently dealing with a large wildland fire in the Fivemiletown area. We have eight appliances and 45 firefighters tackling this blaze in difficult conditions. We believe this fire was started deliberately," said the spokesperson.

Sligo County Council has advised, in light of these fires, the practice of ‘controlled burning’ during this continuing dry spell is strictly prohibited.

Link: Sligo Today 4/5/2017