SFRS contingency plans to provide fire cover for Bressay during Up Helly Aa

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Local Senior Officer reassures community by providing cover from Lerwick

SFRS logo on appliance

The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is to exercise contingency plans to provide cover for the Bressay area of Shetland during the island’s Up Helly Aa celebrations.

The service understands the importance of local events to its residents and the fact that a number of SFRS staff will want to be involved.

In many remote areas, such as Bressay, the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service acknowledges the important role played by its retained firefighters and its responsibility to help balance crews’ home, family and social lives with that of their day job and commitment to their fire and rescue role.

In the run up to Bressay’s Up Helly Aa event, fire cover will be provided by crews in Lerwick, as SFRS understands it has a duty to protect communities at all times.

Prevention and Protection staff have, over the past week, been undertaking leaflet drops and promoting Home Fire Safety Visits to reduce the risk within homes on the island.

Local Senior Officer for the Shetland, Orkney and Western Isles, Billy Wilson said: “Prevention of fire is key in terms of being safe within the home, but householders should also make plans and familiarise themselves with what to do in the highly unlikely event of a fire occurring.

“The emergency response to Bressay during the period will be provided by retained firefighters from Lerwick Fire Station, using well-rehearsed procedures developed jointly with our community planning partners.”

He added: “Our retained staff do an excellent job and we recognise that the history and culture of a community will influence when members of a station may require time away from the service. It is crucial as a service that we balance that with the wider issue of public safety and for that reason we have developed contingency plans.”

If you haven’t yet had your free Home Fire Safety Visit you can get in touch in the following ways:

  • complete our online form on the SFRS website
  • call 0800 0731 999
  • call your local fire station