Monday, 30 September 2013

Fire Service warns against non-emergency calls

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is urging members of the public not to call 999 unless it's an emergency.

It follows an incident where Hastings Firefighters were called out by a man who was unable to gain access into his former flat.

Firefighters were sent to the property in Caves Road, St Leonards-on-Sea at 9.40am this morning (30th September). Upon arrival it was discovered that the man no longer had lawful possession of the property but that his pet cat was still inside.

Following further investigation, it was established that it wasn't an emergency and the cat was believed to be in a healthy condition.

The man was advised to liaise directly with the landlords and consider calling on a locksmith to gain entry.

Incidents of a non-emergency nature should be referred to an appropriate trade person or suitable organisation.  In the case of incidents involving domestic pets the RSPCA should be contacted in the first instance.  The RSPCA will assess the situation and call the fire service if necessary.

Friday, 27 September 2013

Operation scaled back after fire in Wadhurst

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service has tackled a serious fire in Wadhurst.

Crews were called to Beech Hill at 17.55 on 27 September 2013, to a group of five homes in terrace houses.

On arrival they found the middle property alight. There was fire on the first and second floors and in the roof space.

The home has been badly damaged, with 70% of the roof, 50% of the second floor and 25% of the first floor affected by fire.

At the height of the incident, six appliances were sent to the scene, along with the aerial ladder platform, a water carrier and the command support team. Kent Fire and Rescue Service also supported the operation.

Six breathing apparatus were used along with one foam jet and one hose jet, two light portable pumps and thermal imaging equipment.

As of 21.30, the operation was being scaled back.

There are no reports of injuries.

Firefighters on scene at house fire in Wadhurst

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service are at the scene of a house fire in Wadhurst.

Crews were called out at 17.55 on 27 September 2013.

As of 19.00, six appliances were in attendance, plus an aerial ladder platform, a water carrier and the command support team. We also have support from Kent Fire and Rescue Service.

The fire is in the roof space.

There are no reports of any injuries.

Updates will be posted on our website in due course.

Heathfield firefighters get ready for marathon charity challenge

Heathfield firefighters are getting ready to run out 26 miles of hose for charity.

The event takes place on Saturday 28th September at Heathfield Community Fire Station on the High Street (TN21 0UP).

The team will run out hose to the length of a marathon – that’s 42,195 metres... a grand total of 1,835 firefighting hoses. Come and support them... they’ll be there all day!

They’re raising money for the Firefighters Charity and for the Kent, Surrey and Sussex air ambulance.

Thursday, 26 September 2013

Kitchen fire, Whitehawk, Brighton

On 25th September at 10.43am crews responded to a kitchen fire at a property in Falcon Court, Whitehawk, Brighton.

Crews from Hove, Preston Circus and Roedean along with the Control Unit from Lewes responded to the fire, which was on the fourth floor of a nine-storey building.

Crews used two breathing apparatus and one main jet. The stop message was received at 11.12am. A Positive Pressure Ventilation fan was used to disperse smoke from the property.

The cause of the fire was accidental.  

Fire crews assist ambulance crews in Hastings

On 26thSeptember at 12.02, a call was received by the ambulance service requesting assistance at an incident at Bexhill Road, St. Loeonards.

Crews from Bohemia Road, Hastings, were dispatched to the scene where a female casualty had fallen 5ft into a basement storage area.
South East Coast Ambulance crews were already in attendance at the scene and had stabilised the casualty. Due to the serious nature of the injuries involved, East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service had been requested by South East Coast Ambulance Service to secure a suitable extrication route.
Given the difficult access to the cellar combined with the serious nature of the injuries, fire crews explored a number of options regarding the safe removal of the casualty.
Firefighters gained access to the cellar through the lounge floor to enable the safe removal of the casualty in a horizontal position.
The patient was successfully removed by South East Coast Ambulance Service personnel,   assisted by East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service crews. The casualty was transferred by Critical Care Ambulance to the Regional Trauma Centre in Brighton.
Paul Way, East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, Station manager (Operations) Hastings, said: “We advise members of the public to be aware of any unguarded drops into, for example, basements or under-stair areas.”

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service resumes normal cover

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service has resumed normal cover following a four hour strike by members of the Fire Brigades Union in the national dispute over pensions.

The industrial action took place on Wednesday 25th September 2013, between 12.00 (noon) and 16.00. FBU members have now returned to their normal duties.

During the strike, operational staff who are not members of the FBU provided cover throughout East Sussex and Brighton and Hove City.

We received 4 emergency calls. Three were false alarms linked to automatic fire alarms. As is routine with automatic fire alarms, checks were carried out by staff at the locations and they confirmed we did not need to attend.  The fourth was also a false alarm to reports of a vehicle fire.

We also received a request from West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service for assistance in dealing with a bus fire and sent a contingency crew for support.

Chief Fire Officer and Chief Executive Des Prichard said:
“We hope that this ongoing dispute between central Government and the FBU can be resolved swiftly. We cannot rule out the possibility of further industrial action by members of the Fire Brigade Union. We would therefore remind people of the need to check their fire safety measures in order to keep themselves and those around them safe.”

Ready to respond to emergencies

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is ready to respond to 999 calls during planned industrial action, and is urging members of the public not to make unnecessary calls when other organisations could be better placed to help.

The FBU have announced that strike action regarding the national dispute over pensions, will take place today, Wednesday 25th September 2013, between 12.00 (noon) and 16.00.

An emergency response will be provided during the strike and calls will be prioritised when lives are in danger or if someone needs rescuing.

Chief Fire Officer and Chief Executive Des Prichard said:

“If we respond to non-emergency calls then those most in need could be at risk. The sorts of non-emergency calls we often receive include people being locked out of their homes or seagulls which need rescuing. There are other agencies, individuals and organisations – for example animal rescue charities or locksmiths - that can be contacted in these cases.

We still want people to call 999 in an emergency, when lives or the public may be at risk. An experienced control room operator will answer the call as usual.”

East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is also calling for people to double check their safety arrangements.  A series of checklists and videos have been published on to help explain what safety measures can be taken.

Firefighters called out to house fire in Camber

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service have tackled a fire overnight in Camber.

Firefighters were called out at 20.18 on 24 September to an address in Marchants Drive.

The two storey home was well alight, with the fire on the ground floor.

Foam and a hose reel jet were used.

Crews used breathing apparatus to check whether the fire had spread into adjoining properties.

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

East Sussex Fire Authority Chairman calls for people to Stay Safe and look out for others

Chairman of the East Sussex Fire Authority Cllr. Phil Howson has called on people in East Sussex and Brighton & Hove to look out for older and vulnerable members of the community and to make sure they are not at risk from fire.

It comes ahead of a strike by members of Fire Brigades Union in the national dispute over pensions. The strike will take place between 12.00 (noon) and 16.00 on Wednesday 25th September.

East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service has put in place contingency plans and trained, professional crews to provide emergency cover. There are also many things that communities can do to stay safe, reduce calls and enable firefighters to focus on emergencies – particularly those where lives may be in danger.

Chairman of the Fire Authority, Councillor Phil Howson said: “Through our Stay Safe campaign, we are reaching out to communities, businesses and other organisations to remind them about the simple steps they can take to prevent fire and save lives – both during the strike and in the longer term.

“But what may seem like simple fire prevention steps to us, such as checking a smoke alarm, clearing some clutter or checking on kitchen safety, can be a major hurdle for older people, those with reduced mobility or people facing other life challenges. If you can, please remember to check in with neighbours, friends and family, especially if they are older or vulnerable.

“If you have a fire, our message is simple. Call 999, get out and stay out.”

Our simple, practical advice to all homeowners includes:

·         Fit smoke alarms on each floor in your home, keep them dust-free, and test them once a week. Consider buying a ten-year alarm; otherwise change the batteries every year.
·         Take special care when you are tired or when you've been drinking. Most domestic fires happen between 10pm and 8am.
·         Make an escape plan so that everyone in your home knows how to escape in the event of a fire.
·         Keep the exits from your home clear of obstructions so that people can make their escape if there is a fire. Make sure that occupants can find keys for doors and windows easily.
·         Take care in the kitchen - accidents while cooking account for 59% of fires in the home. Never leave young children unsupervised in the kitchen.
·         Take extra care when cooking with hot oil; if you don't use one already, consider buying an electric thermostatically controlled deep fat fryer.
·         Never leave lit candles unattended and ensure that they are in a secure holder on a heat-resistant surface away from flammable materials.
·         Don't overload electrical sockets. Remember one socket - one plug!
·         Keep matches and lighters out of reach of children.
·         Don't leave the TV or other electrical appliances on standby as this could cause a fire. Always switch it off and unplug it when not in use.
·         Ensure cigarettes are stubbed out and disposed of carefully and never smoke in bed.

Our Stay Safe checklists are also available on our website.