Bragan Mountain is ablaze tonight Sunday, May 1st and the authorities are working
feverishly to halt its progress. I have no information as to how the fire started,
or indeed should I say fires, as it appears that it is coming from three or four
different starting sites. It extends over a wide area stretching with some pockets
outside of the main fire-front. Fire tenders, including Civil Defence, are at the
scene and it seems their policy is one of containment rather than trying the very
difficult, if not impossible, task of killing the fire completely. Today there are
mountains blazing in many parts of Ireland and it is thought that some of these were
started deliberately. This will result in serious damage to the environment and to
nature and wild-life in those areas. Lets hope there will be no loss of human life
anywhere as a result. This very morning Paddy Sherry brought me to areas in the Knockatallon
side of Bragan to show me the amount of litter and waste which has been dumped there.
We discussed the possibility and danger of fire at the moment due to the dry weather
spell. We visited the region which was burned in the last serious fire on Bragan
and spoke of the causes of such fires. Little did we know that a few hours later
such a fire would have taken a grip on another part of the mountain, though not very
far away. I would like to thank my two Aughnacloy friends who saved a lot of my shoe-leather.
Below I have some photos of the rubbish dumped along the side of the road. It included
washing machines, microwaves, parts of cars, childrens toys, household waste, and
bags full of clay!! Would it not have been cheaper for the owners to drive to the
Waste Recycling Centre where 2 euro would have got rid of all in a proper fashion.
It would be easier to get to as it would be a shorter journey and better roads and
would do no harm to the environment. Did you know that a glass bottle or any piece
of glass can start a fire as it acts as a magnifying glass with the sun rays and
can light a fire very quickly. This is known to happen on graves where glass ornaments
have been placed – it can light the peat on the grave.
I have also included photos of parts of Bragan prior to the fire and scenes of areas
which suffered from the fire. I am told that over 2,000 acres was burned but I have
also been told that already the grouse are back in the devastated areas. This is
great news but plant and insect life will take some time to recover.
Before the fire
Before the fire
After the fire below:
The Volunteers gathered this skip full and the bags full one Saturday morning but
as can be seen there is ten times as much still there. In places it would take a
Hi-Mac and Tipper lorry to clear all from one or two spots along the road. Monaghan
Co Co supplied the skip.