Accidental house fires in Dundee at lowest level for three years

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LSO Pryde says firefighters will never be complacent.

Line of fire engines, blue lights, appliances, night


Firefighters continue to carry out prevention efforts as the number of accidental house fires reduce in Dundee, latest figures show.

Crews have carried out a wide range of educational work as well as a total of  296 Home Fire Safety Visits across the City of Discovery between January 1 and March 31.

Meanwhile, the statistics also show that the number of accidental dwelling fires has fallen by more than 10 per cent between March 2017 and March 2018. This is 29 fewer – from 225 to 196.

During the same period the number of non-fatal casualties resulting from accidental fires fell from 46 to 30.

Gordon Pryde, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s Local Senior Officer for Dundee, Angus, Perth and Kinross, welcomed the reduction but said crews will never be complacent.

He said: “Prevention is key to our efforts in helping to keep communities safe. In essence, stopping a fire from occurring in the first place is at the forefront of our efforts.

“One of the ways we work to prevent fire from occurring is through our free home safety visits where crews engage not only with families but with the most vulnerable in our communities to ensure we provide the most appropriate support to reduce the risk of unintentional harm in the home.

“We’re here to help everyone stay safe but we’re particularly keen to support the most vulnerable and elderly within our communities.

“That’s why we appeal to everyone to check if their elderly relatives, friends or neighbours are in need of this vital support – and to contact us directly.”

During the same period, city crews attended more than 1200 instances of unwanted fire alarm signals.

UFAS incidents occur when firefighters are called to an incident as a result of equipment failure, malicious false alarms or false alarms with good intent.

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is committed to working with businesses and duty holders and, where appropriate, improving management arrangements within premises to reduce the number of unwanted fire alarm signals.

LSO Pryde said: “We will continue to work towards driving down these figures.

“Ensuring that businesses and duty holders manage their fire alarm systems effectively can help us reduce the number of unwanted fire alarm signals.

“UFAS can result in lost revenue for businesses and can present a risk of staff becoming complacent.

“It’s hugely important that people are aware of the consequences of firefighters making unnecessary blue light journeys.

“I am pleased to note that Dundee City Council has recently expressed its commitment to helping us to tackle this problem.

“Positive partnership working will always act as an advantage when working to reduce this figure.”

Educating people across Scotland on the consequences of making malicious calls remains a key priority for the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service.

Between January 1 and March 31, malicious calls counted for almost 10 percent of false alarms in Dundee.

Emphasising his commitment to raising awareness of the dangers of making malicious calls, LSO Pryde said: “When firefighters attend false alarmsthey can be taken away from genuine emergencies,however, thanks to our robust and flexible strategic planning, communities are protected at all times.

“Educating people on the potentially devastating effects of making a malicious call remains a key part of our prevention efforts.

“That is why we work with schools, partners and communities to try and educate people on the potential consequences of such reckless actions, and reinforce why they need to stay safe.”