Scilly’s Fire Statistics Reveal First Malicious Call Out In Five Years

fire engine st marys 2Scilly’s Fire and Rescue Service have had their first malicious call out since 2009 according to statistics presented to councillors in their annual report.

Chief Fire Officer Steve Webster told Radio Scilly that the alarm was caused by a youngster spraying an aerosol at a fire detector.

Steve says they identified the individual, who was spoken to along with their parents about the dangers of false alarms.

He said the Fire Service take malicious alarms very seriously, along with their partners in the Police, who in the past have apprehended an offender as he left the Scillonian in Penzance.

Steve says they mean the resources of the fire service are committed to covering that call, delaying assistance for a real shout if it comes in at the same time.

In Scilly, that can be quite lengthy, especially if help has to come from another island.

There were a further three accidental false alarms caused by faulty equipment.

Steve says the service in Scilly has worked hard and successfully with property owners to reduce these, even though the number of fire alarm systems being installed is increasing in an effort to improve safety.

Last year there were a total of 24 incidents requiring the fire service, slightly up on the previous year’s numbers.

11 were primary or secondary fires and 7 calls were for non-fire related incidents, like flooding.

But after two years without any chimney blazes, that trend on the islands was reversed with 2 new incidents last year.

In his report, Steve says safety audits have been made at all hotels, the hospital, boarding houses and B&Bs.

And he says the vast majority of island homes have been visited under the Home Fire Safety Check initiative, with 520 smoke alarms fitted. Inspectors have been focussing on the safety of electric blankets and potential exposure to carbon monoxide.

Many homes are now being visited for the second or third time, says Steve.