Working Together To Protect Our Countryside And County Borough

Rhondda Cynon Taf Council is once again supporting South Wales Fire and Rescue as part of Operation Dawns Glaw, a taskforce set up to reduce the number of grass fires.

Operation Dawns Glaw, a multi-agency taskforce of specialists from key agencies across Wales aims to reduce, and where possible, eliminate the impact of grass fires across Wales.

The task force, which was initially established in 2016 to tackle incidents of deliberately set grass fires across Wales, will also be turning its attention to the increase in accidental fires, often caused as a result of our own careless behaviour when out enjoying the countryside.

During 2021, Fire and Rescue Services across Wales dealt with 2,089 grass fires. Whilst this was a slight decrease on 2020, the number of accidental fires in 2021 had increased by 24 per cent.

Every year, fire is responsible for the destruction of thousands of hectares of countryside, open space and wildlife habitats. The Council is working closely with South Wales Fire And Rescue and its communities to build a healthier and resilient countryside and to develop a more biodiverse countryside for the future. 

Working with our communities and sharing knowledge provides a better understanding on what we can all do to limit the damage that accidental fires cause to our environment.

Peter Greenslade, Corporate Head of Prevention and Protection for Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service, and Chair of Operation Dawns Glaw, said: “We launch our campaign again this year with a plea that we all continue to work together to build a healthier and more resilient Welsh landscape, by developing a more biodiverse countryside for our future.

“We want to continue to protect our landscapes, green grassland and countryside that we are all so fortunate to have on our doorstep. We also want to work with our communities, farmers and landowners to share our knowledge and understanding of the effect that both deliberate and accidental fires have on our communities.  

“We understand that controlled burns can have a positive effect on the environment, creating biodiversity and a sustainable eco system and we are available for free advice on how do to this safely.

“I would also like to take the opportunity to reinforce our messages that while accidents can happen, there are some within our communities who are deliberately setting fire to our countryside – not only is this a crime, for which they will be prosecuted, but it also places unnecessary pressure on front line services and puts our communities in harm’s way.

“I would encourage anyone with information relating to such crimes to call 101, or to report anonymously to CrimeStoppers on 0800 555 111.”

Find out more about Operation Dawns Glaw 2022

If you are out and about enjoying the countryside and beautiful scenery in Rhondda Cynon Taf and come across any suspicious activity, please call CrimeStoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or ring 101. In an emergency, always call 999.

Together we can all help stop grass fires and protect our countryside and County Borough.

Posted on 12/07/2022
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