This is an archived press release
Thursday 14 July 2005
14 July 2005
Action to prevent moorland fires in the Peak District
Signs warning people to take extra care to prevent fires are going up this week on moorland sites in the Peak District.
Recent hot weather has dried out the moors making them especially vulnerable to fires, which harm wildlife, destroy plants and cause erosion, taking years to regenerate.
A blaze caused by a camp-fire has already damaged 6,000 sq metres of moorland on Bleaklow this month.
Car users can help by not throwing lit cigarette ends out of car windows as this can be another common cause of upland fires.
Peak District National Park Authority Senior Ranger Jenny Waller said: "The moors are vulnerable, but we're not asking people to stay away, they can still come and walk or climb, as long as they make sure they don't accidentally start a fire.
"We just ask people to be responsible – please don't stub cigarettes out in the peat or throw a lit cigarette end out of a car window. We are asking people not to light camp-fires or leave any litter that is likely to cause fires.
"Ground nesting birds are vulnerable to a moorland fire, which strips the vegetation from the peat. This washes away in the rain causing long-lasting erosion and ruins the enjoyment of people who come out to enjoy the special landscape of the Peak District National Park."
Fire Warning signs have been erected by the National Park Authority, landowners including the National Trust and United Utilities, and gamekeepers responsible for the moors.
Rangers carry out extra fire patrols during dry weather, and the Peak District Fires Operations Group is on standby to tackle any blaze in a remote area.