MPs join Fire Service to see first hand what a busy bonfire weekend is like for crews

Halifax MP Holly Lynch, Bradford MP Judith Cummins and Chair of the Fire Authority Councillor Judith Hughes joined West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service(WYFRS) crews last night to experience life as a firefighter on a busy bonfire weekend night.

Fire Chiefs described the evening as ‘busy but quieter than last year’ and called for a safe and enjoyable Bonfire Night tonight.

On Saturday evening crews came under attack twice in the Bradford area and once whilst an engine was returning to Halifax fire station.

Already this evening (05/11/17) there has been one attack on crews who have had fireworks thrown at them in the Bradford area.

The Control room has been very busy since 4pm (05/11/17) dealing with minor bonfire-related incidents.

The Fire Service is keen to encourage people to enjoy the evening safely and will only extinguish a bonfire if it is out of control and/or posing a danger to life or property.

MP Holly Lynch said: “Last night I witnessed first- hand incredible partnership working from West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service and West Yorkshire Police, which has ensured our communities could enjoy themselves, and stay safe over bonfire weekend.

“However it was disappointing that once again, crews in West Yorkshire were subject to attacks and had fireworks thrown at them whilst they were trying to do their jobs.

“The ‘Protect The Protectors’ bill will create a new offence of assaulting an emergency service worker to send a strong message that it is absolutely unacceptable to assault our 999 responders.

“The new law is currently progressing through the House of Commons and my experiences last night will help shape it to make sure that it provides all the necessary protections firefighters require to stay safe whilst doing their jobs.”

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Dave Walton added: “We are pleased to report that whilst busy, we experienced a quieter night on Saturday than last year. Notwithstanding this, our crews came under attack from a minority of mindless idiots on two occasions in the Bradford area and once as they returned to Halifax fire station. Fortunately none of these incidents resulted in injury.

“As Bonfire Night itself commences we have seen already one attack on our crews and we urge people to think twice about this reckless behaviour.

“Our plea to everyone is to respect our staff, and to have a safe, and enjoyable, evening.”

You can follow our safety messages on Twitter @WYFRS using #WYBonfire or follow our campaign against attacks on firefighters by following #MoreThanAUniform

www.westyorksfire.gov.uk