Fire crew hit by bricks and roads blocked

Firefighters in action.
Firefighters in action.

Community leaders have been urged to use their influence after fire crews were attacked and roads blocked during tensions over the past fortnight in Craigavon.

Police at Brownlow have received reports of a tree blocking the road at Tullygally on one day and glass and branches being pulled across the road on another day causing traffic diverions.

Police received reports at 8.44pm on June 22 that roads at Tullygally were blocked.

A similar report was received on Monday, 23 June, at around 6.55pm when glass and branches were pulled across the road by a number of youths, causing vehicles to take diversionary actions.

On Tuesday, June 24, a NI Fire and Rescue Service vehicle was attacked by youths throwing stones when they attended a report of grass fires in Aldervale. Fire crews were extinguishing the fire when a group of up to 20 people threw bricks at the appliance, causing damage to the bodywork and wing mirror.

Sergeant Alwyn Peters, Brownlow NPT, said: “There is absolutely no excuse for an attack on emergency services who are there specifically for the purpose of providing help and assistance to the local community.

“We believe that these incidents are an attempt to draw emergency services into the area so that they can be attacked and at the same time cause needless risk and inconvenience to the motorist.

“No one in the community wants to see a return to previous years when fear of attack resulted in loss of services to the area or see young people receiving a criminal record. I am asking everyone with influence in the community to work to ensure that young people realise the consequences of becoming involved in this type of activity and that they understand the affect they are having on the quality of life of those who live there.

“We appreciate the support the community have already provided us with and I am asking anyone who notices activity of this nature to contact police straight away on the 101 non-emergency number.”