SFRS is urging the public to take the extra care in the countryside this week as the risk rating for wildfires in eastern and southern areas of Scotland is raised to ‘very high’ from today (18 July) until Friday 22 July.
Parts of Eastern and Southern Scotland are forecast to reach temperatures of more than 30°C and people who live, work or are visiting rural areas, in particular, are being urged to exercise the utmost caution to avoid fires breaking out.
Bruce Farquharson is Deputy Assistant Chief Officer with SFRS. He said: “In a prolonged period of high temperatures, the risk of wildfires breaking out increases.
“At this time of year, the ground vegetation is a combination of green growth, with a relatively high moisture content, and dead vegetation lying on top which can easily ignite and spread quickly over a large area.
“Weather patterns this week show that Eastern and Southern Scotland are at ‘very high’ risk of wildfires but, with sensible precautions, the public can play a crucial part in prevention. Taking some simple steps can prevent vast damage to the environment and protect emergency service workers from attending avoidable incidents.
“During the next few days, I would urge the public to avoid lighting fires outdoors but if you must, check for restrictions or permissions required by the landowner and make sure you use a fire safe pit or container that can be properly extinguished before you leave. We need people to be aware of how quickly things can get out of hand – the smallest outdoor ignition can spread rapidly and burn for days. Therefore, we are asking people to act responsibly when enjoying the outdoors and please think twice before using anything involving a naked flame.”
Visit our summer safety pages for further advice.