Fire­fighter at­tacks at more than one a week

Hayes & Harlington Gazette - - NEWS -

AT Least one fire­fighter out sav­ing lives is at­tacked in Lon­don every sin­gle week, shock­ing statis­tics re­veal.

At­tacks on on-duty fire­fight­ers in the cap­i­tal are at their high­est level for five years, with 75 in­ci­dents recorded in 2016/17.

The lat­est fig­ures show fire­fight­ers are suf­fer­ing the high­est num­ber of at­tacks since 77 were recorded in 2011/12.

The most com­mon type of at­tack was ver­bal abuse, with 48 in­ci­dents in 2016/17, the high­est num­ber of in­ci­dents since at least 2010/11.

There were also 10 in­ci­dents of ob­jects be­ing thrown at fire­fight­ers or ap­pli­ances, four of harass­ment, three of phys­i­cal abuse and 10 other acts of ag­gres­sion. One fire­fighter was se­ri­ously in­jured due to an ob­ject be­ing thrown in the same time pe­riod.

A fire­fighter was in­jured af­ter a fire­work was thrown dur­ing a Bon­fire Night call-out this year.

The num­ber of in­ci­dents had dropped in the years in be­tween, with a low of 46 in­ci­dents recorded in 2014/15, with 62 recorded in 2015/16.

Dave Green, na­tional of­fi­cer of the FBU and a for­mer fire­fighter, said: “Vi­o­lent at­tacks on fire­fight­ers are op­por­tunis­tic and thank­fully rare.

“The vast ma­jor­ity of at­tacks are not se­ri­ous, and they are usu­ally borne out of a lack of ed­u­ca­tion and a lack of un­der­stand­ing of the neu­tral­ity of the fire­fighter role.”

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