Unattended barbecue sparks major gorse fire on headland

A view of the gorse fire at Groudle headland

A view of the gorse fire at Groudle headland

This was the scene after a large fire broke out on Groudle headland.

An unattended disposable barbecue is believed to have sparked the gorse fire near Sea Lion Rocks yesterday afternoon (Monday).

Firefighters tackle gorse fire near Sea Lion Rocks at Groudle

Firefighters tackle gorse fire near Sea Lion Rocks at Groudle

Multiple 999 calls were received by the control room from members of the public at about 4.20pm reporting a large fire on the headland.

About 200 square metres of headland was involved which caused a large plume of smoke to cover the Onchan area.

Three pumps two from Douglas and one from Laxey attended the area together with the water bowser from Douglas Station.

The fire had spread along the headland and due to its location proved difficult to access.

A plume of smoke ruise from Groudle headland

A plume of smoke ruise from Groudle headland

It was found to have been started by the careless use of a disposable barbecue which had been left unattended, said the Fire and Rescue Service.

Crews remained at the scene for two and half hours damping down hot spots to ensure the fire did not flare up again.

Earlier, fire crews were called to deal with a grass fire on the railway line in Santon, which was reported just before lunch.

A pump from Douglas and a water bowser were in attendance for an hour while firefighters damped down the area on the lineside at Keristal.

Unattended disposable barbeque that sparked the gorse fire at Groudle

Unattended disposable barbeque that sparked the gorse fire at Groudle

The Douglas-bound train had to be held at Santon station while crews dealt with the incident.

Fire chiefs warned the public to take care with camp fires and barbecues.

A spokesman for the Fire and Rescue Service said: ‘With two significant grass fires in one day we would like to remind the public to be extra vigilant with camp fires and barbecues the ground is currently extremely dry and fires will spread very quickly.

‘Never leaves fires unattended and be very careful where you use any type of barbecue.

Smoke rises from the  gorse fire near Sea Lion Rocks at Groudle

Smoke rises from the gorse fire near Sea Lion Rocks at Groudle

‘Keep some water available nearby in case you need to dowse the fire, ensure that the area used when left that there are no hot embers that could start a fire later, and please always take your rubbish home with you.’

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