Fire service urges extra caution during strikes

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West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service are asking the public to think about what they can do to take extra care, to safeguard themselves, their family and their communities during the industrial action.

The strikes, by members of the Fire Brigades Union, are due to take place on Wednesday September 25 from 12pm to 4pm.

The decision for strike action relates to an on-going trade dispute between the Fire Brigades Union and the Government over its public sector pension reform programme.

In particular the current proposals to introduce a new Firefighters’ Pension Scheme from April 2015 to replace the two current pension schemes that most operational personnel are members of.

Inevitably, there will be a reduced level of emergency response during periods of industrial action, however, West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority remains committed to protecting public safety at all times and has put in place a range of contingency measures to provide emergency cover across the county.

Dave Walton, Assistant Chief Officer for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service said: “We have an established contingency plan developed as part of our standard business continuity arrangements. This plan has recently been exercised and tested using a variety of scenarios and we are confident in our ability to provide fire cover, albeit on a restricted basis, to the communities and businesses of West Yorkshire.”

Of course there are also a number of simple steps that the public can take to help to safeguard themselves, their family, homes and communities from fire and other emergencies:

l Don’t leave cooking unattended and never cook after drinking alcohol

l Never smoke in bed and always dispose of cigarettes carefully

l Never leave electrical items switched on overnight and don’t overload sockets

l Drive within the speed limit, avoid distractions at the wheel, stay patient and always wear your seatbelt

l Ensure you have smoke detectors fitted in your home and test them every week.

And remember, if you do have a fire, get out, stay out and call 999.

For more fire safety advice and tips on how to protect yourself, your family and your home go to: www.westyorksfire.gov.uk