During prolonged periods of high temperatures and minimal rainfall, open heathland or wooded areas can be at risk of fire as grass and foliage becomes like a tinder box.
Often ignition can be caused by the magnifying effect of glass bottles or tin cans left in the countryside. Other actions such as having fires or barbecues in the countryside can lead to equally large fires which can spread quickly depending on the strength of the wind.
How to prevent a grassland fire
- Don’t discard cigarettes or matches whilst walking or driving through the countryside
- Don’t have BBQs in unauthorised areas and make sure it is cold before it is disposed of correctly
- Never leave a BBQ unattended
- Don’t start campfires in the countryside
- Don’t discard rubbish – litter such as reflective cans and glass can start fires
- If you live close to woodland or heathland, do not burn off garden rubbish during hot weather
- Report any evidence of illegal firesetting activity
What to do if you discover a fire
- Move to a safe place and call the fire service on 999 immediately, provide as much detail as you can – size of fire, location and terrain
- Don’t tackle the fire
- If you haven’t already, self evacuate the area as soon as possible – these fires can spread fast