Accidental house fires at lowest level in five years across Dumfries and Galloway
13 April 2016
Figure revealed by Scottish Fire and Rescue Service Local Senior Officer Alan Fairbairn
Accidental dwelling fires across Dumfries and Galloway have fallen to the lowest level over the past five years, new figures show.
Between 01 April, 2015 and 29 February, 2016, there were 75 - compared to 93 the previous year. There were 112 over the same reporting period in 2013/14, 98 in 2012/13 and 96 in 2011/12. The majority of accidental dwelling fires over the past year involved cooking but resulted in limited damage to property. The figures were revealed by Local Senior Officer for Dumfries & Galloway, Alan Fairbairn. They were presented to Dumfries and Galloway Council on Tuesday, 12 April by local SFRS Group Managers Joseph Hamill and David Broughton. SFRS is committed to reducing accidental house fires through free Home Fire Safety Visits where alarms are tested or installed - and vulnerable members of the community are a particular priority. The LSO said in his report: “There is positive evidence to suggest, where smoke detection has been fitted, early intervention and awareness has led to damage being limited to the actual item first ignited. “Most of our vulnerable citizens are older people who live alone and may have carers or other support agencies calling on them. Operation Olive Branch uses this connection to increase the home safety of this traditionally hard-to-reach group. “Home Fire Safety Visits continue to be a main route to protecting people in their homes.” Accidental fires at industrial, commercial and public buildings as well as sheds, garages and out buildings have also gone down. There were 31 over the reporting period compared to 39 in 2014 and 51 in 2012. LSO Fairbairn said: “Fire in business premises can have a significant financial, economic and social impact on local communities. “Therefore, after every fire in these types of premise, the Service will carry out a post-fire audit to review the cause of the fire, provide advice to occupiers and, if necessary, implement improvement actions to prevent reoccurrence.” The instances of road traffic collisions where the SFRS was in attendance, remains relatively static with current figures of 87, only slightly down from 91 in 2014 and 89 in 2013. The Service plays a significant role in the multi-agency Road Safety Partnership, having recently taken up the role of Chair of the Strategic Group. The LSO said: “We will continue to monitor all incidents on our regions roads. This enables us to identify any trends and to work alongside our partners in Police Scotland, the Local Authority and Transport Scotland, amongst others, to target preventative work and reduce the risk on the areas roads.”