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NFU issues warning as heat wave sparks crop blazes
18/07/06

The NFU has issued a warning after crop fires were sparked across the countryside during the current heat wave.



fire - photo courtesy Yarik Mission

And with temperatures set to soar countryside visitors and farmers are being urged to be on their guard to prevent further fires from starting in fields in the run up to harvest.

NFU chief arable adviser Guy Gagen said: “Every year thousands of acres of countryside, open space and wildlife habitats are destroyed by fire and during the hot weather this risk increases.

“The threat of fire is intensified by fly-tippers, who already cause farmers no end of problems, but glass contained in dumped rubbish can start a fire by magnifying the sun’s rays in parched fields.

“However if everyone follows a few simple rules this risk can be reduced and everyone can continue to enjoy the countryside.”

The slightest spark can start a blaze so campers and visitors to the countryside are urged to:

  • Clear away picnic rubbish
  • Only BBQ in authorised areas and not light fires in the open countryside
  • Extinguish BBQs carefully
  • Refrain from throwing lighted cigarette ends from car window

    Farmers are advised to:

  • Check fire fighting machinery and hand tools are accessible, as well as protective clothing such as sturdy shoes rather than Wellingtons
  • Be aware of potential sources of fire from farm activities such as keeping harvest machinery clear of debris and the spontaneous combustion of hay and other materials

link Set-aside extension sought by NFU to help prevent more field fires
link Ford’s £1billion green vehicle plan good news, says NFU
link English Champions at Major Climate Change Youth Summit
link Farmers fight for prominent role in energy plans
link Prepare Now For Climate Change, Farmers Warned

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