A helicopter has been water bombing a three mile-long (5km) wildfire in north Sutherland.

Firefighters have been tackling the blaze between Melvich and Strathy since Sunday morning.

It has burned across about 5,000 acres (2,023 ha) of moorland. At one point it affected power supplies to 800 homes.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service has warned of a heightened risk of wildfires across Scotland until Friday due to warm and dry weather.

A helicopter was first used to drop water on the fire on Tuesday. The water bombing was resumed on Wednesday.

‘Hugely frightening’

Eight fire crews are currently at the scene.

The SFRS said that the A836 road was open, that no properties were affected and power supply in the local area had been restored.

Station Manager Alex McKinley said: “We would like to remind the public to stay away from this area at this time, and remind the local community to ensure windows are closed if smoke travels in the direction of their homes.

“Our firefighters will remain on scene for some time yet.”

Local Highland councillor Linda Munro told BBC Radio Scotland that the wildfire was as bad as it could be without causing serious injury.

She said: “It is to the wire on the scale of widlfires. It is hugely frightening when there are fires burning around you.”

Ms Munro said that earlier in the week the headteacher at a local primary had taken appropriate action in keeping children in the building until thick smoke affecting the school bus route had dispersed.

The councillor added: “Our retained fire services are doing an absolutely fantastic job.”