Ben Lomond wildfire rages on 18 hours after being started by ‘dropped cigarette’

Firefighters are still battling a blaze on Ben Lomond believed to have been caused by a dropped cigarette.

The fire on the west slope of the Munro near Loch Lomond has been burning for around 18 hours.

Emergency crews were forced to abandon their efforts through the night after initially being called to the fire at 2.15pm on Tuesday.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue said they would return to the scene during daylight hours as firefighters havee been working in “difficult terrain to extinguish the fire”.

In a post on social media, crews said they believe the 1km fire could possibly have been started by a dropped cigarette.

Alarming footage yesterday showed the 974-metre high mountain engulfed in smoke as clouds billow into the sky.

The fire has prevented access through the Ptarmigan path, reports the Daily Record.

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The Ben Lomond Ranger Service has told the public to avoid the area until further notice.

Posting a clip on Facebook on Tuesday, they said: “The fire is along a 1km front, all probably from one dropped cigarette.

“It is going to take a lot of work to put out. Please share to spread awareness of the need to take care with cigarettes.”

Locals have said that the wildfire started out small on Tuesday afternoon but had “gone mad” by yesterday evening.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service said: “We are receiving a lot of calls about a fire affecting grass on the west slope of Ben Lomond. We are aware of this incident.

“Our crews have been at the scene working in difficult terrain to extinguish the fire and will return during daylight hours.”

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