Killarney National Park: a fire devastates 60 hectares

Irish firefighters worked for over 4 hours to extinguish the fire.

Killarney National Park was the victim of a fire last night.
Killarney National Park was the victim of a fire last night.
Date 30 March 2020

It was a rough night: the Irish fire brigade had the terrible task of fighting a fire in the heart of Killarney National Park in County Kerry, Ireland. After 4 hours of fierce fighting the fire was finally brought under control. But the toll is heavy: it is estimated that more than 60 hectares of the Park went up in smoke.

Killarney National Park: a man-made fire

Notable, but reduced damage throughout the Park.

Most of the fire took place near Dinis in the middle of the National Park. The damage was contained, and only 60 hectares out of 10,236 were affected. An unfortunate result, but one that did not affect the wild beauty of this fabulous park, famous all over the world.

The National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) fought the fire with support from two units of the Kenmare and Killarney Fire Departments and Kerry County Council.

After investigation, it would appear that the fire was started as a result of human intervention: Irish people are said to have tried to burn the tall grass to clean up their land. A common act in Ireland in the spring, but illegal from March to August.

In response to such a disaster, the Department of Agriculture, Heritage and Gaeltacht criticised those who set the fire on Twitter.

As well as diverting emergency services, it is illegal to burn land at the moment and those who do so face penalties. Now that it is the ideal season for bird nesting, mammal breeding, and regeneration of growth and habitat after winter, NPWS is calling on the public to stop burning gorse,” he said.

In addition, there has been much criticism from the population and the government. As a reminder, the mobilisation of the fire brigade for this fire, at a time when Ireland is in the midst of a pandemic, aroused the indignation of the Irish people. Many blame the perpetrators of the fire for being irresponsible, while the country is in the midst of a fierce fight against COVID-19.

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