FIRE engines in South Yorkshire will soon be hosting adverts on their sides after chiefs gave the go-ahead to a project to generate cash in the face of public spending cuts.
South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue has approved new advertising and sponsorship packages which would see hoardings placed on fire appliances, similar to the posters used on the sides of buses.
Money from the scheme would be used to fund fire safety prevention schemes, under threat since the Government spending review.
The project is seen as a key income generator for the force, which could open the door to wider sponsorship opportunities.
As yet none of the packages have been sold, and fire service representatives are currently meeting with local companies to discuss the options available.
Firms can place adverts on fire engines or on the brigade’s website, or sponsor safety drives, fire stations and premises, open days and annual award ceremonies.
The force’s move is the first of its kind in the UK.
Potential advertisers could include specialist businesses who provide crew members with safety equipment and clothing.
Beverley Sandy, the brigade’s director of finance and resources, said: “We feel this is a great opportunity for businesses across South Yorkshire to be associated with an established, very well-respected brand.
“Every single day our vehicles and premises are seen by thousands of people. Our firefighters and community safety teams engage with hundreds more.
“We hope our involvement with sponsors and advertisers will bring benefits to both parties and help us reinforce the community and business safety message across South Yorkshire.”
It is not certain when the first adverts will appear.
South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service has to make £3 million of savings this year.