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High risk of moorland fires in Peak District National Park - how you can help

Firefighters from Derbyshire have been dealing with a huge moorland fire on Saddleworth Moor this week
Firefighters from Derbyshire have been dealing with a huge moorland fire on Saddleworth Moor this week

A prolonged period of hot dry weather has meant the risk of fire on the moors of the Peak District National Park is currently high.

The Peak District National Park has launched Operation FireWatch, with staff from the national park, partner organisations and volunteers set to be place at moorland vantage points throughout the area to look out for fires.

But what can you do to help?

The Peak District National Park has issued some information and advice to help protect the important moorlands of the national park.

Many wildfires are unintentional and caused through careleness.

Most common causes

Unextinguished/poorly managed barbecues

Discarded cigarettes

Litter - including glass, which causes intense heat.

Campfires

How can I help?

Ensure you always dispose of waste items in bins where possible, or remove them and dispose of them responsibly. Do not leave rubbish on site.

What are the rules around barbecues in the Peak District National Park?

The Peak District National Park does not support the use of barbecues outside of dedicated areas.

You must always have permission from the landowner to barbecue or light a campfire.

At times of high fire risk, do not use barbecues. Notices will be displayed at these times.

If you have permission from the landowner to light a barbecue, you must:

Always site your barbecue low to the ground, ideally on a rocky area with as little vegetation as possible. Do not site a barbecue directly onto vegetation.

Not use accelerants (such as paraffin), to reduce the risk of splashing in surrounding areas

Never leave a lit barbecue unattended

Avoid overhanging trees, leaves or wood close by to your barbecue

Have a supply of water to hand for emergencies

After use, ensure your barbecue is fully extinguished and cold, with no burning embers

Take all charcoal and litter away with you - do not discard it on site.

Advice

Fires of any kind should not be started in moorland areas, regardless of the time of year

You may occasionally see authorised or 'controlled burning', used as a specialist vegetation management technique. This will be under the supervision of estate managers. Do not approach areas where this is taking place

If you see an unattended fire, or someone starting a fire deliberately call the fire service on 999, giving as much detail about the location as possible.

Do not put yourself at risk by trying to tackle a fire.

Early reporting of fires can significantly reduce the damage caused.