Wild fires: the risk is hotting up

Posted by Catherine Flitcroft on 18/07/2013
Watch out for wildfires.

It's hot in the hills. And with no signs of temperatures dropping, the risk of fire is rising right across moorland areas. How can you help prevent wildfires?

With the recent spell of hot weather, the risk of wildfires has risen. In the past few weeks a number have already been reported across the moorlands of England and Wales.

The Fire Severity Index (FSI), provided by the Met Office, is the trigger for fire restrictions on Open Access land when conditions become exceptional. 

View the Fire Severity Index for your walking or climbing area

A serious fire has the potential to spread quickly and escalate into a big problem. Wildfires fires don’t just affect the surface vegetation but embed deep into the peat, and need a lot of water to put out.

More information:

The causes and impacts of moorland wildfires

BMC access officer Cath Flitcroft interviews the Area Ranger for Longendale in the Peak District, following the 2006 fires.

How you can help prevent wild fires:

  • If you smoke on the moors, stub your cigarette out on a stone or on the sole of your shoe and take the cigarette butt home
     
  • Respect the National Parks ‘high fire warning signs’ placed at key access points - these indicate that the moorland conditions are very dry
     
  • Camping isn’t allowed on any Open Access area unless the landowner has specifically given you permission, so don’t camp, and definitely don’t start a campfire. Likewise don’t fire up a BBQ in a high-risk area.
     
  • If you see a fire, call 999 immediately, give them a general location and try to contact the ranger service or local access authority as soon as possible.

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