Barbecue starts fire in Oldham countryside

GREATER Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) is reminding people to take extra care when spending times in the great outdoors as temperatures continue to rise across the UK.

The plea comes following a fire in the Greenfield area of Oldham yesterday (Monday, May 31, 2021) which is believed to have been started by a barbecue.

GMFRS fire crews were mobilised by North West Fire Control at around 5.15pm to reports of a fire in Holmfirth Road, close to Dove Stone Reservoir.

Firefighters from Oldham, Mossley and Stalybridge community fire stations attended and tackled the fire – which measured approximately 20 square metres – using beaters and a bucket of water.

GMFRS’ Station Manager Tony Morgan, who attended the incident as a wildfire officer, said: "Thanks to the swift actions of fire crews initially on scene of the incident, the blaze was brought under control and put out quickly meaning we didn’t need to utilise further wildfire resources. Thankfully on this occasion the fire didn’t spread into a wildfire, which can happen easily with the hot, dry weather.

"We believe the fire was started by a barbecue in the woods. Our message is strong and clear - never have a barbecue or campfire in the countryside or start a fire deliberately. Many people think it’s just the flame from a barbecue that can start a fire, but it’s actually the heat from barbecues that often sets peat and dry moorland alight."

Working with local partners, GMFRS works to remind people to stay safe when visiting the countryside by sharing advice and tips on how to prevent wildfires from breaking out, and about the damage this kind of fire causes to the local area, communities, businesses, and the environment.

In 2019 GMFRS worked closely with colleagues in Oldham and Tameside councils, which resulted in Public Space Protection Orders now being in place in parts of the two boroughs. This means that anyone found lighting a fire, barbecue, or other objects like fireworks and sky lanterns, will be given a fixed penalty notice of or face prosecution.

Go to our countryside safety page for more information about wildfires and staying safe.

Fire crews will be in and around the Dove Stone Reservoir area of Oldham on Saturday, June 5, 2021 speaking with people about water safety and staying safe when visiting the countryside.


01/06/2021 15:02 PM