Highlands & Islands

Fire crews bring wildfire near Inverness under control

Wildfire on Sunday night Image copyright John MacDonald/SFRS
Image caption An image taken by Scottish Fire and Rescue Service's John MacDonald of the wildfire on Sunday night

Firefighters have brought a wildfire on moor and grassland south of Inverness under control.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service was alerted to the blaze between Torbreck and Essich at 17:10 on Sunday.

Firefighters at the scene of the blaze on Sunday Image copyright John MacDonald/SFRS
Wildfire on Sunday night Image copyright John MacDonald/SFRS

Police closed the B861 between Slackbuie and Balnafoich to allow the emergency services access.

Six appliances were initially sent to the scene and thick black smoke could be seen rising from the blaze.

Smoke from wildfire

It has been reported that an electricity tower was engulfed by flames. The Knocknagael electricity substation is above the scene of the wildfire.

Four appliances remained at the scene until early Monday afternoon.

No-one has been injured and no property has been affected by the fire so far.

Smoke from wildfire
Smoke from wildfire

Firefighters used beaters, knapsacks filled with water and high-powered hoses to tackle the flames.

The wildfire affected an area of about 2.5 sq km.

Smoke from wildfire
Image caption Smoke from the wildfire on Sunday evening

John MacDonald, local senior officer for the Highland area, said firefighters had worked hard through the night to control the flames.

He said: "I'd like to praise the commitment and determination of our crews when faced with this significant wildfire as they worked tirelessly and under arduous conditions.

"As well as our whole-time crews, we are also extremely grateful to our retained crews who quickly responded and supported firefighting operations which have continued through the night.

"Their responsive actions highlight just how important our retained firefighters are - particularly in rural areas - where the risk of wild and grass fires is rife at this time of year."

Smoke from wildfire
Smoke from wildfire

The wildfire has come during a period of about two weeks of dry weather in the Highlands, and is one of a number of such incidents in the region.

Mr MacDonald said: "We want people to enjoy the warmer weather we have been experiencing but to do so safely and responsibly to avoid the risk of wildfires, especially during periods of dry weather.

"The public can help prevent wildfires by making sure they dispose of litter and smoking materials carefully and avoid the use of open fires while in rural areas.

"It's crucial people act safely and responsibly in rural environments and follow the countryside code."

Smoke from wildfire
Smoke from wildfire on Monday morning
Image caption Smoke rising from the wildfire on Monday morning

All images are copyrighted.