East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service will be carrying out a high level training exercise to safeguard against a possible future fire on Eastbourne Pier.
Firefighters from Eastbourne and neighbouring retained stations will respond to a simulated fire on the end of the pier today (Tuesday 3rdDecember).
Certain areas will be inaccessible and residents are being asked to show their understanding during this training exercise.
Borough Commander Dave Sheppard outlines the reasons behind the exercise:
“Firefighters routinely carry out this type of exercise to test their response to incidents that can occur. Eastbourne Pier is a significant part of the Eastbourne experience and as such it is important that we regularly test that our response is both efficient and effective.
“We hope that there will be very little disruption to the normal activity on the Pier, which will remain open during the exercise, although some areas will be out of bounds where the firefighters are working.
“We would like to encourage people to continue their normal business during the lead-up to the busy festive period and to continue enjoying the festive activities on the pier.”
“We like to train in as realistic environment as possible so it is very important for us to be able to use premises such as the Pier as it will ensure that our firefighters are familiar with the area should an incident occur. We are very grateful to the owners and manager of the Pier for giving us this opportunity.
“Fires on piers are notoriously difficult to extinguish once they get started, as we have seen in other incidents around the UK and locally in East Sussex, so it is very important that we are able to respond as swiftly as possible.
“East Sussex Fire & Rescue Service would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone visiting Eastbourne Pier and enjoying the many activities that are laid on by both Eastbourne Borough Council and the local traders a very safe and enjoyable evening. Whilst browsing the Christmas stores perhaps remember to include a new battery for your smoke alarm as a gift to the whole family.”
This exercise starts at 7.30pm and should be wrapped up by 9.30pm.