Emergency services are on heightened alert ahead of Cork’s annual bonfire night tomorrow, after fire fighters were attacked on the city’s northside.
A fire brigade unit was pelted with large rocks and stones when it responded to reports of wheelie bins on fire in the Glenamoy Estate area of Mayfield at around 10.30pm on Monday.
They were attacked close to the area known locally as ‘the tarry path’, which runs behind Mount Brosna, Avonmore Park, and Glenamoy Lawn, and which has been the scene of regular antisocial behaviour.
The side windows of their fire truck were smashed. Fire fighters escaped injury but were forced to withdraw from the area until gardaí arrived on the scene. The crew was then escorted into the estate where they dealt with the fires. Gardaí are investigating the incident.
The attack comes just days before tomorrow’s annual bonfire night in the city, traditionally one of the fire brigade’s busiest nights.
Gardaí confirm that three dedicated mobile patrols will be on duty that evening to accompany fire crews as they respond to illegal bonfires in certain known flashpoints.
The city council organised a series of bulky goods collection services last month, collecting items such as furniture, mattresses, and carpets, which might otherwise have ended up on illegal bonfires.
Council crews are also on mobile patrol to remove material which is being stockpiled for illegal bonfires in areas where there is a risk to health and safety, property and power lines.
The city council has organised five outdoor community events on the night — three on the northside and two on the southside — and has encouraged people to attend these fun, family-friendly alternatives, rather than illegal and unmanaged bonfires. The events will feature games, bouncy castles, face painting, zorbing, and music, with bonfire sculptures planned in Mahon, Togher and Knocknaheeny.
The Knocknaheeny event takes place in Kilmore Park 5pm-8pm; at Pophams Park, Farranree, 4pm-7pm; in Glenamoy Park, Mayfield, 5pm-8pm; in Loughmahon Park, Mahon, 5pm-9pm; and in Clashduv Park, Togher, 5pm-9pm.
More than 13,000 people attended last year’s events, with 40 local community groups and 150 volunteers involved. The council is also supporting other community events in Bishopstown, and other smaller projects.
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