Northern Ireland news

Bonfire problem hotspots revealed in fire service figures

The bonfire yesterday at the corner of Donegall Road and Coolfin Street, beside Belfast City Hospital. Picture by Hugh Russell
Brendan Hughes

THE hotspots where firefighters are most frequently called out to tackle dangerous Eleventh Night bonfires can be revealed.

Fire Service records obtained by The Irish News show where crews have been required to attend between 2010 and 2015.

The most common location was beside Belfast City Hospital.

On seven occasions crews were sent to Coolfin Street, off Donegall Road in the Village area of south Belfast.

The bonfire site has prompted safety fears in the past and caused traffic problems in 2009 when a towering 40-foot structure toppled onto the Donegall Road.

Four call-outs each were also recorded for bonfires at Clara Street in east Belfast, Huntly Road in Banbridge, Magherafelt's Leckagh Drive and Princess Way in Portadown.

Seven areas were recorded as requiring Fire Service assistance on three occasions.

They included Ballyreagh Road in Newtownards, Hillmount Drive in Carryduff, Linfield Road at Belfast's Sandy Row, and east Belfast's Cluan Place.

Images of this year's Cluan Place pyre yesterday showed it constructed at the entrance to the street off Albertbridge Road and close to nearby buildings.

Fire Service callouts to Eleventh Night bonfires (2010-15):

The other locations recorded were Main Street in Ballycarry, Co Antrim, Parkview Road in Castlederg, and Edenderry Gardens, off Huntly Road in Banbridge.

In the past several houses at Huntly Road have required external cooling due to the searing heat from bonfires.



Fire crews were called out to 250 bonfire-related incidents over the period, according to the latest figures obtained through Freedom of Information requests to the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service

Tackling the bonfire incidents over the six years has cost the Fire Service almost £670,000 of public funds.


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