Firefighters attacked

Wednesday, 9 November 2016

Firefighters attacked thumbnailThe remains of a Hallowe'en bonfire in a playpark ajacent to Cluaneo Meadows, Coalisland.

FIREFIGHTERS came under attack in Coalisland during the busiest Hallowe'en in Mid-Ulster for six years.

The incident occurred during the celebrations on Monday, 31st October, when authorities were called to a bonfire in the Moor Road area of the town.

A spokesperson for the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service said: "Firefighters came under attack from youths throwing fireworks and were prevented from accessing the area as youths had blocked the entry route to the bonfire."

Firefighters withdrew to a safe location and monitored the bonfire, which later died down.

Police were informed and attended the scene.

Crews also dealt with four incidents in Cookstown, two in Magherafelt, one in Maghera and eight in Dungannon.

Mid-Ulster MP Francie Molloy condemned the attack.

"It's regrettable a small number of youths fired fireworks and missiles at the fire service who are there to protect and look after local people," he said.

SDLP Coalisland Councillor Malachy Quinn also condemned attack.

Cllr Quinn also told the Courier: "I want to condemn the attacks on the Fire Service in Coalisland on Hallowe'en night. The attacks are the height of stupidity and those involved should be ashamed of themselves.

"This attack not only but the fire crew at danger but because they had to withdraw from the area they would not have been able assist those who had a genuine emergency.

"Its sad that this attacked happened on the same night when the town was showing all that was good about it with a fantastic fireworks display which drew massive crowds from right across the area.

“Those who attacked the fire service need to grow up."

Western Area Command, which covers areas across Mid-Ulster, received 43 call outs over the Hallowe'en period - a quarter of all reports recorded in Northern Ireland.

The NIFRS attended a total of 166 incidents across the Province October 31, an increase of 47% from last year and the busiest Hallowe'en period since 2010.


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