Kerry County Council’s fire services have reported a ‘very busy’ year so far, dealing with 624 incidents between January and June. This represents a 13 percent increase on the same period last year. Gorse fires accounted for over half of the fires in the county. In the first six months of the year, the fire services dealt with 401 fires in Kerry. House fires accounted for 89 of these and there were 209 incidents of gorse fires. The fire service also dealt with 137 ‘Special Service Incidents’ of which, 65 were road traffic accidents. The number of gorse fires in the county has jumped dramatically. There were 209 gorse fires dealt with between January and June, compared with only 75 for the corresponding period last year. This represents an increase of almost 180pc.