first_imgGARDAI are investigating claims that some of the gorse fires of recent days may have been started deliberately by young people throwing firelighters from cars.The claims are a number now being examined as Donegal faces more than €10 million in damage to property, livestock and infrastructure.The fire services have been stretched beyond its limits answering calls to more than 300 fires from Ballyshannon to Buncrana within the past four days. And although some started accidentally, Gardai and fire chiefs now believe many were started understands that emergency services believe the huge gorse fire which spread across Lettermacaward and the surrounding areas on Saturday night started after a person began burning rubbish.However other fires are believed to have an even more sinister element and were started by people carrying out arson copycat attacks in rural areas.A full Garda investigation backed up by evidence found by the fire service has now been launched into the cause of many of Donegal’s fires. A Garda source revealed “We have heard numerous claims as to how the fires stated and out investigations will take their course.“We will be asking people who may have information to come forward to us and tell us what they know to enable us to further our investigation.“Everyone has seen the damage which has been caused to property in recent days and if some of these fires were started maliciously, then we will pursue those responsible,” he aid.Local MEP Pat the Cope Gallagher has said that those responsible for starting fires must be brought to justice.“If it is proved that these fires were started maliciously then I believe those responsible must be held accountable and an example must be made of. “Thankfully there has been no loss of life but that is in no small part to the excellent work of the Gardai, the fire service, the army and the huge effort by the local community.“But there has been a huge amount of destruction done and somebody has to be answerable for that,” he said.Taoiseach Enda Kenny also said he now understood that many of the fires were started deliberately.“I want to condemn the person or persons responsible for setting these fires which have become quite dangerous,” he aid. EndsGARDAI INVESTIGATING CLAIMS THAT FIRELIGHTERS USED TO START GORSE BLAZE was last modified: May 4th, 2011 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:donegal gorse firesfirelightersGardalast_img read more