Shocking scenes gripped the Cynon Valley on the night of the 20th April as Darrenlas mountain in Mountain Ash was set on fire for the second time that week.
Mountain Ash fell victim to the arsonists as they set 10 hectares of land on fire, destroying a number of trees. It is not the first time that week that Darrenlas mountain in Mountain Ash had been set on fire, on Tuesday 19th April at around 2pm – when children were in nearby Darrenlas Primary School – the mountain was set alight, though it has not been confirmed if it was deliberate.
However, the fire in Mountain Ash on the 20th April was confirmed on Twitter by Jennie Griffiths (Head of South and Mid and West Wales Fire & Rescue Services) that it was set on fire deliberately: ‘Two large wildfires were deliberately started in Mountain Ash. One at 7.16pm involving 10 hectares of land and one at 8.48pm, destroying grass and trees.’
Local residents reacted instantly on social media expressing their concern, as the fire crews battled the large blaze, the flames were seen across the Valley. The Leader of RCT Council, Andrew Morgan, expressed his frustration at the fires on Twitter to me in reply to my question when I asked if I could use his pictures of the blaze for this article. He replied: ‘Again no problem. Was very close to houses so anything to make people realise it’s not a game would help.’
Well, in addition to Councillor Morgan’s point about making people realise it is not a game, I have to ask the question, what is being done about deliberate grass fires? It is evident that efforts so far are not working as previously hoped, so what next? In my previous article here on Wicid, I said that new drones were going to take the lead in trying to prevent these fires and catch the criminals.
As a witness to the fires in Mountain Ash, I was shocked to see our mountain burning so violently, and all because someone thought it would be possibly funny etc. It is very sad, and I hope the message does eventually get through to people that this is a crime and it needs to stop.
Credit for witness pictures: @AndrewMorganRCT
Thanks to both above for letting me use their pictures which greatly captured the terrifying flames.
And thank you for reading, look after yourselves.
Related Article: When Will It End? The Fires In The Valleys