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Over 900 emergency calls made to Dublin Fire Brigade on Halloween

Halloween night is usually one of the busiest nights of the year for pretty much every fire brigade nationwide, and this year was no different.

Dublin Fire Brigade received a shocking 900 calls last night, with fireworks and illegal bonfires causing the vast majority of incidents.

Greg O'Dwyer, Acting Assistant Chief Fire Officer with Dublin's brigade said the service's full crew was on duty last night, with the entire fleet in operation.

According to O'Dwyer, regional control centre mostly dealt with Halloween-related occurances, and injuries sustained were prominently of the hands and eyes.

Speaking to the Irish Independent, he commented on the massive amount of ambulance calls:

"We received 904 '999' calls into our control centre, 368 of these were Dublin fire calls (230 Halloween related) and 365 were Dublin ambulance calls," the service said this morning.

While speaking on RTÉ's Morning Ireland, Mr O'Dwyer said that this was at least six times busier than the normal Wednesday night, but relatively on the same wavelength as past Halloweens.

He also said that anti-social behaviour was actually decreasing and the number of injuries are being reduced as a result of organised events by local authorities in the run-up to this year's Halloween.

This past month, Gardaí have been clamping down on the gathering of incendiary items such as fireworks or bonfire materials, which appears to have had positive effects.

"I can’t stress how positive it is to have the organised events. It keeps people in a safe environment," said Mr O'Dwyer.

The assistant fire chief described the situations where cars were actually being driven onto dwindling bonfires in the early hours of the morning, as they die down. 

He claimed that people will do "anything to keep them going", and that the major danger with illegal bonfires is the combustible materials which people throw onto them, for example aerosol cans and gas cylinders.

"There is no safe distance" for those types of fuels.

Cork reported an unusually small number of bonfire-related calls, with Cork City Fire Service claiming that last night was no busier than average.

The Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service (NIFRS) described their Halloween as a "relatively quiet" evening.

Firefighters in N. Ireland responded to 6% fewer calls on Halloween night compared with last year.

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