Firefighters tackle raging wildfire throughout the night

Maurice Wilkins sent in this photo of last night's fire above Oban.

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Firefighters battled for 15 hours to extinguish the wildfire seen raging on a hill beyond the Scottish Water installation near Pennyfuir.

At the peak of the blaze there were four appliances from as far away as Inveraray at the scene after the first call to a grassfire was reported at 3.34pm yesterday.

Beaters, specialist knapsacks and hoses were used to get the flames, seen from miles, under control.

It is understood firefighters had to walk their way in from Pennyfuir to get to the burning hill.

Dramatic photos have been captured by people in the town with the orange glow of flames shooting up into the sky with landmark McCaig’s Tower in the foreground.

A Scottish Fire & Rescue Service (SFRS) spokesman confirmed fire crews were finally able to leave the area at 7.35am today.

‘The fire is now totally extinguished,’ he said.

A very high – extreme risk of wildfire is in place  across Western Scotland with SFRS urging people who live within or who may enter rural environments to exercise caution.

The warning is in place until the end of today.

Wildfires have the potential to burn for days and devastate vast areas of land and wildlife; and threaten the welfare of nearby communities.

Senior Officer Bruce Farquharson said: ‘We are asking the public to exercise extreme caution and think twice before using anything involving a naked flame.

‘Many rural and remote communities are hugely impacted by wildfires, which can cause significant damage.

‘Livestock, farmland, wildlife, protected woodland and sites of special scientific interest can all be devastated by these fires – as can the lives of people living and working in rural communities.

‘These fires can also have a hugely negative impact on the environment and the release of greenhouse gas emissions into the atmosphere.

‘Human behaviour can significantly lower the chance of a wildfire starting, so it is crucial that people act safely and responsibly in rural environments, and always follow the Scottish Outdoor Access Code.’

Caption: Maurice Wilkins sent in this photo of last night’s fire above Oban.
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