First in the country to stop sending fire engines

Posted under Miscellaneous on 20 Apr 2011

06 Apr 2011

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service has become the first in the country to stop sending fire engines to investigate automatic fire alarms (AFA).

Instead, a safety officer will be sent to investigate AFAs in a bid to cut down on the number of unwanted fire signals, which can significantly drain resources, as well as wasting businesses’ time.

If there is a fire, then a crew will be sent to deal with it, but it is hoped that the trial will help in reducing false alarms, as the fire service currently has to deal with approximately 3,500 across the county each year.

The fire rescue service is trying out the new system in areas of Portsmouth. However, it has reassured residents that fire engines will still be sent to schools, hospitals, hotels and care homes in the event of an AFA.

A spokesperson for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “We will still send someone to check what the cause of the alarm is but this won’t be in a fire engine and we won’t class it as an emergency.”

According to Suffolk County Council, businesses can reduce the risk of unwanted fire signals by ensuring that all staff are aware of where fire detection and alarm systems are placed.

This will help to ensure they do not undertake any work in the area involving heat, smoke, flames or sparks without proper clearance.