Group Manager for Prevention and Protection in Fife, Steven Michie, presented the latest Performance Report to the Fife Council Safer Communities Committee today (28 April).
Presenting on behalf of Local Senior Officer Iain Vincent, Group Manager Michie reported that there were 5480 Home Fire Safety Visits across Fife from April to December last year – 46 per cent above target.
SFRS works closely with partner agencies and communities to reduce the number of house fires through the delivery of targeted visits. As part of these visits fire safety advice is given on a number of home fire safety risk areas; for example leaving cooking unattended, a fire escape plan and testing and maintaining smoke detectors.
GM Michie said: “Partnership working and the delivery of Home Fire Safety Visits are both crucial in helping to reduce the number of accidental dwelling fires.
"We continue to work directly with our partners to ensure those who are most at risk or vulnerable from fire or harm in the home are identified and that appropriate risk reduction measures are put in place. These targeted approaches will continue to develop and improve as we move forward.”
Fife communities have also seen a reduction of deliberate fires.
There were 576 deliberate fires recorded between April and December, 2015 a reduction of three per cent over the previous three year average.
Firefighters, along with our partners, work hard to build relationships with the young people within the community and give advice on how to avoid getting involved in wilful fire raising and hoax calls.
GM Michie said: “It is pleasing to note that deliberate fires are maintaining a decline over the five year period and incidents involving refuse were the lowest on record. We will continue to highlight the impact on our communities of fire-related anti-social behaviour.”
“This is a result of the excellent partnership work undertaken within the ward areas of Fife. Local managers have been working closely with partner agencies to identify those responsible in order to reduce incidents of this type. Where young people are identified as having committed these acts they are referred to our prevention team and where appropriate, part of our ‘DiversiFIRE’ intervention programme.”
He added: “A number of initiatives have been undertaken to reduce these incidents such as school visitations, community clean-up activities, engaging with youth groups and business premises.
“Intelligence is shared regularly as part of the multi-agency tasking and co-ordinating meetings and also the fire related anti-social behaviour group where discussions have led to a number of actions being taken to address this issue.”
Crews tended to 23 fire-related casualties. This is a 49 per cent decrease based on a previous three year average.
GM Michie said: “The SFRS vision is to have no fire fatalities or casualties throughout Scotland and we are striving to achieve this through partnership working with Fife Council, Police Scotland and social and health care partners, and these links will continue to develop and implement risk reduction strategies."
Crews regularly visit houses and provide free Home Fire Safety Visits which helps to reduce the number of casualties and fatalities through early intervention which is instrumental in contributing to safer communities. This partnership approach will contribute to the reduction of the number of casualties particularly from unintentional harm in the home.
To register for a FREE Home Fire Safety Visit call the SFRS Freephone number: 0800 0731 999, or visit the website at www.firescotland.gov.uk