Sixteen Callouts To Gorse Fires In Past 24 Hours

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KERRY County Councillors have unanimously condemned the illegal burning of gorse in the county following a further 16 callouts to gorse fires by the Kerry Fire Service in the last 24 hours.

At a teleconference meeting of party representatives and senior management of Kerry County Council this morning, councillors appealed to members of the public not to burn gorse and to stop putting a unacceptable strain on the resources of the emergency services at a time of national emergency.

Cathaoirleach of Kerry County Council, Cllr Niall Kelleher said: “We deplore and condemn the illegal burning of gorse which is a disgraceful act at this time of the year anyway but which is particularly despicable at a time when emergency services are working together on a once-in-a-century pandemic emergency.

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“All of the elected members are unanimous in their condemnation of these fires and this criminal activity. We thank the Fire Service for their exceptional effort in recent days in combatting these fires which are putting lives and livelihoods at risk,” said Cllr Kelleher.

The Cathaoirleach urged members of the public with any information about the illegal burning of gorse to provide that information to An Garda Síochána.

Cllr Cathal Foley of Sinn Féin said: “This is having a serious impact on the ability of the fire service to both tackle these fires and carry out their essential role in tackling the Covid-19 crisis, it also devastating to wildlife. There is no excuse for placing a significant portion of our population at risk from people who show no consideration for their communities at this time of national crisis.”

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