A stock image of a fire.

Fire crews battling blaze in Fardrum

Fire crews from Athlone, Ferbane and a water tanker from Mullingar have been battling a shed fire for several hours today (Friday) at Fardrum, Athlone.

The alarm was raised at 6am at a property close to the Birr turn off where hundreds of bales of straw and hay were ablaze.

The Garda Press Office has confirmed that officers are investigating what they described as “suspected criminal damage by fire”.

A spokesperson for Athlone Fire Brigade estimates between 200 and 300 bales have been affected, some in and out of the shed, while there is also loose straw on fire.

Crews remain at the scene and expect to be there for the rest of the day.

Smoke plumes have reported from Junction 7 Moate of the M6 motorway throughout the morning.

It is expected that once the blaze is dealt with, the scene will be preserved and technically examined.

The Garda Press Office said officers are investigating what they called a “suspected criminal damage by fire” at Fardum, Athlone.

Investigations into the matter are ongoing.