A senior officer is issuing an appeal to help prevent future incidents after more than 360 calls were made to North Wales Fire and Rescue service this weekend.
Between 8am on Friday morning (25 March) and 8pm on Sunday evening (27 March), control room staff dealt with 364 calls. 31 of these were fires in the open.
The most serious wildfires included:
- Llyn Celyn (Time of call 12.30hrs Friday 25th March) – Eight appliances, one off road vehicle, one incident command unit and one helicopter were in attendance. Stop received 08.38hrs Sunday 28th March.
- Rhiw, Gwynedd (Time of Call 10.54hrs Saturday 26th March) – three appliances and one wildfire vehicle were in attendance. Stop received 17.41hrs Saturday 26th.
- Mynydd Nefyn (Time of call 19.00hrs Saturday 26th March) – Three appliances, three pinzgauer appliances and one wildfire unit were in attendance. Stop received 17.41hrs Sunday 27th March.
- Tanygrisiau (Time of call 12.12hrs Sunday 27th March) – 10 appliances, two off road vehicles, one wildfire vehicle and one incident command unit were in attendance. Stop received 10.46hrs Monday 28th March.
- Trawsfynydd (Time of call 13.41hrs Sunday 27th March) – five appliances, one off road vehicle and one wildfire vehicle were in attendance. Stop received 12.45hrs 28th March.
- Llyn Elsi, Betws Y Coed (Time of Call 14.33hrs Sunday 27th March) – three appliances were in attendance. Stop received 19.29hrs Sunday 27th March.
Paul Scott, Senior Fire Safety Manager for North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, said: “I witnessed first hand the professionalism, commitment and resilience of our staff over this busy weekend period as I attended these devastating wildfires across South Gwynedd and into Conwy.
“During a seven hour period over Sunday afternoon we experienced three serious wildfires running simultaneously – a fire in the open in Tanygrisiau involving 10 appliances, one involving five appliances in Trawsfynnydd and another involving three appliances at Llyn Elsi, Betws Y Coed. In addition to this, two crews were also needed to attend a kitchen fire in Wrexham.
“Thankfully the flexibility and commitment of staff on the ground and our Control room staff meant that we could attend all these incidents and help keep our communities safe.
“However, our resources should not be stretched like this – these fires were completely unavoidable.
“My message is clear – please do not burn unless you really need to. If you do need to burn before the end of the upland burning season on Thursday, please ensure that you have a burn plan in place, you have adequate resources in place to control the fire and that you notify our control room on 01931 20522006.
“Also, while accidents can happen, there are some within our communities who are deliberately setting fire to our countryside – this is a crime for which they will be prosecuted.
“If you are out enjoying the countryside and you do come across any suspicious activity, please call CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or ring 101. In an emergency, always call 999.”