Howth wildfires


Sir, – On the evening of June 22nd, a fire started on the south side of Howth Hill, as of today, it is still burning. Various fire-fighting efforts have been unsuccessful and as I understand it, the approach is to let it burn itself out unless it is threatening houses or infrastructure. This seems a terrible idea, has the wildlife no value? Will we let the whole hill burn?

I wonder what will happen as we continue to experience more of these disasters as our climate changes. Should we consider instigating some kind of community warning system? I understand that in the Netherlands they test sirens once a month and use these to alert people in an area of a problem. This was used to good effect last week when a dyke burst and residents were evacuated successfully.

It is not difficult to imagine a scenario where a strong southerly wind pushes the fire over towards the more heavily inhabited areas around Sutton or Howth villages. How would people be informed if they needed to evacuate?

– Yours, etc,


Howth, Dublin 13.