Monday, November 10, 2008

Merseyside Fire Service talk about Bonfire Night

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service is thanking the community for helping make this the quietest Bonfire period for many years.

The number of anti-social behaviour fires, attacks on firefighters, fireworks seizures, inappropriate use of fireworks and cautions given to retailers were all down compared to last year.

The biggest success story was the reduction in anti-social behaviour fires. Since October 19 until the end of November 5 there have been around 800 incidents, compared with 1,438 the previous year.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Mike Hagen said: “This has been the quietest Bonfire period for us for more than 10 years and we would like to thank the community for working with us and helping make this happen.

“This year we have organised our biggest operation in the run up to Bonfire Night, with 10 dedicated units working every evening including Small Fires Units, a Trojan Fire Engine and a Bonfire Removal Unit. We have worked with the police and other partner agencies to provide a co-ordinated response and the results speak for themselves.”

A great deal of proactive work has been done in the community to try and reduce incidents in the run up to November 5. This includes working with retailers to provide information about legal storage and sales of fireworks; and a scheme with councils, the probation service and the Fire Support Network charity to remove combustible materials.

Some of the successful results:

• More than 400 premises were inspected by the Fire Service and there was a 50% reduction in the number of fireworks seized

• Just two cautions were given to retailers, compared to 35 last year

• There were no incidents involving the misuse of industrial fireworks

• Attacks on firefighters was down by 50% compared to last year

• In excess of 200 tonnes of combustible material was cleared off the streets

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