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Weekend bonfires keep crews busy

Published 13/07/2015

A UDA flag is seen near a bonfire in the Shankill area of Belfast
A UDA flag is seen near a bonfire in the Shankill area of Belfast

Fire crews have dealt with 52 bonfire incidents over the past two days.

Between 6pm last night and 1am this morning, the Fire Service was called to 23 incidents - seven of which required active intervention with crews cooling nearby properties.

On Saturday night, there were 29 bonfire-related call-outs.

At an incident in Larne, Co Antrim, burns gel was administered by firefighters to a young man who suffered minor injuries.

In another incident at Wellwood Street in Belfast city centre, three pumping appliances were used to cool properties close to a large bonfire.

Last year crews tackled 44 bonfire-related blazes, while in 2013 the figure was 54.

The fires are an annual tradition ahead on the eve of the Twelfth of July - the high point of the Loyal Order marching season - and communities often compete to build the biggest structure.

The cross-community Alliance Party has called for the police to investigate after election posters, national flags and effigies of some politicians were set alight.

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