Aberdeen firefighters visited more than 2,000 homes
25 May 2017
LSO for Aberdeen City, Mike Dickson, presented his annual performance report to the local authority’s Communities, Housing and Infrastructure Committee on May 24
Firefighters have visited more than 2,000 homes across Aberdeen City - and helped people to stay safe.
Dedicated crews carried out a total of 2,010 Home Fire Safety Visits during 2016-17 - a significant rise from 359 in 2012-13. They provided advice and guidance to residents on how to avoid fire and what to do in the event of an emergency, also testing or installing smoke detectors during each visit. The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is particularly keen to support the vulnerable and elderly members of communities to live safely at home. The Home Fire Safety Visit total was revealed by Local Senior Officer (LSO) for Aberdeen City, Mike Dickson, when he met with local councillors on the Communities, Housing and Infrastructure Committee on Wednesday, May 24. Speaking after the meeting, LSO Dickson said: “Our free Home Fire Safety Visit service is the very cornerstone of our prevention efforts and we have continued to refine our approach, to identify and support those individuals who we deem to be at a higher risk from having a fire in their home. “We continue to build on our collaboration with partner organisations in the city to enhance referrals - which improves our overall service to the local community. “Developing the ability to assess a range of risks allows us to provide support to those who may need it as quickly as possible.” Deliberate fires also decreased by 21 per cent in the city compared to the previous year – these include fires involving wheelie bins, grass and refuse. LSO Dickson said this was indicative of the local partnership approach with Aberdeen City Council, Police Scotland and other agencies to reduce fires of this nature. He said: “We are encouraged by the continuing and steady reduction in the number of deliberate fires over the past year. This is a credit to the local community and all those who support the range of initiatives targeting such events. “However, whilst we have noted a slight reduction in the number of house fires in the last year, and a reduction in both the severity and harm suffered to people when a fire has occurred, we will never become complacent. “Tragically, two people lost their lives in house fires in Aberdeen during this reporting period and we are acutely aware of the distress and anguish this causes for all those affected. “The thoughts of the Service are very firmly with those affected by both tragedies and we will continue our efforts to identify those most at risk with a view to achieving zero fire deaths - calling upon the local community to support us in this endeavour.” LSO Dickson added: “Moving forward, it is our intention to continue to build upon - and refine - our preventative approach with partners to support our aim of reducing risk in our local communities. “We would far rather be visiting homes, engaging with young people and providing helpful advice about fire prevention and safety than actually attending a fire or other incident - and dealing with the devastating impact that it can potentially have. “If you believe that you or anyone you know may be at risk from fire, please get in touch with us. If someone is at risk and does not have a smoke alarm fitted in their property, SFRS will provide and install one free of charge.” Anyone can arrange a free home fire safety visit by calling SFRS on the free phone number 0800 073 1999, by texting ‘FIRE’ to 80800 or by filling in a form at www.firescotland.gov.uk.