Firefighters rescue 27 children from cars in South Yorkshire

South Yorkshire's Chief Fire Officer James Courtney.
South Yorkshire's Chief Fire Officer James Courtney.
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Firefighters have rescued 27 children locked in cars in South Yorkshire over the last 12 months.

Most incidents involved youngsters becoming locked inside vehicles when doors accidentally shut with the keys left inside.

The rescues are among 1,400 ‘special service’ incidents that firefighters attend each year, including car crashes, water rescues, flooding and helping people trapped in lifts.

Chief Fire Officer James Courtney said: “If the fire service didn’t attend these sorts of incidents, who else would?

“Although our community safety work has reduced fires significantly in recent years, fire and rescue services still get called to an enormous range of incidents, many of which require specialised skills, equipment and training to deal with.

“We recognise that the fire sector must accept its share of Government cuts as part of the public sector austerity programme. However, I am concerned that some may see our success in reducing house fires by a third in the last 10 years and assume it is easy to make a disproportionate level of cuts to our service.

“It’s easy to forget the vast range of incidents our firefighters are called to deal with.”