Kildare’s Fire Service has issued warnings about the dangers of bonfires in advance of the Halloween weekend.
While generally advising people not to go near bonfires on the basis that they are dangerous, illegal, bad for the environment and a drain on their serivces, the Fire Service have also issued bonfires do’s and don’ts guidelines.
They advise that people should enure that adults supervise the bonfire at all times, only build a bonfire in an open space well away from buildings, trees, vehicles, and overhead power lines.
“Wind can carry sparks long distances and can cause fires; do not build bonfires on tarmacadam or asphalt surfaces; never climb onto or into a bonfire; don’t build a bonfire too high; check bonfires for pets before lighting them; never light a bonfire with petrol or other flammable liquids; no not throw spray cans, cylinders, fireworks or tyres on a bonfire; do not play near bonfires and stay a safe distance away; have buckets of water to hand in case of emergency and pour water on the embers when the bonfire is finished.”
Meanwhile Gardai have issued an appeal to all members of the public in advance of the bank holiday weekend.
“We’re hoping that everybody enjoys the weekend but we want everybody to take care and look after themselves,” said a Garda source.
“In particular, we’d ask that parents know where their children are and what they’re up to and that people enjoy themselves and have a safe weekend.”
The Environmental Protection Agency has also issued a warning to Kildare households and businesses not to use bonfires to dispose of waste or hazardous waste.
With many people now collecting materials for use in bonfires, the EPA issued a statement last week reminding people in Kildare that only someone carrying a Waste Collection Permit is allowed to stockpile waste.
It is estimated that approximately 20 percent of households do not avail of a waste collection service and 10 percent of adults admit to burning household waste.
What many people may not know is that this could lead to fines of up to E3,000.