South Yorkshire firefighters deal with 3,993 arson attacks in 12 months

Firefighters at a factory blaze in Rotherham

Firefighters at a factory blaze in Rotherham

Firefighters in South Yorkshire dealt with 12,943 incidents over a 12 month period - including 3,993 arson attacks, new figures reveal.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue operators received 32,359 calls between April 2013 and the end of March.

They deployed crews to 2,088 property fires - including 625 accidental house blazes and 221 non-domestic property fires.

Firefighters also dealt with 597 ‘special service’ incidents, including helping people trapped in lifts.

Crews also dealt with 353 collisions, including 236 where casualties needed to be cut free from the mangled wreckage of vehicles.

There were 795 serious arson attacks, involving properties, cars and outbuildings in addition to 3,198 lower level arson attacks involving bins, grass and piles of rubbish.

The figures are disclosed by fire chiefs in their ‘corporate performance report’ - an annual analysis of fire service activity.

It showed there were 932 false alarms caused by automatic fire detection systems.

Fire chiefs claim analysis of the figures reveals that over 65-year-olds are the most likely to be killed or injured in house fires.

Some 54 casualties were injured and three people killed in accidental house fires over the 12 month period, with 42 per cent aged over 65.

Men are also more at risk of serious fires than women, accounting for 32 casualties, compared to 25 women last year, according to the report.

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue’s Head of Community Safety, Kevin Ronan, said: “Anyone can suffer a house fire, but these figures confirm what we’ve believed for some time, that the older you get, the more vigilant you need to be in terms of fire.

“We’re especially calling on people to lend a hand to older people they know, whether it’s an older relative or even a neighbour.

“Spending a few moments doing something simple like testing someone’s smoke alarm for them could greatly increase that person’s chances of escaping a fire.”


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