Avon Fire and Rescue Service

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Avon Fire and Rescue Service
Avon Fire and Rescue Service.png
Operational area
Country  England
Region Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire
Agency overview
Established 1974 (1974)
Employees 930
Chief Fire Officer Kevin Pearson
Facilities and equipment
Stations 21
Website
Official website

Avon Fire & Rescue Service (AF&RS) is the fire and rescue service covering the unitary authorities of Bath and North East Somerset, Bristol, North Somerset, and South Gloucestershire in South West England.

History[edit]

Avon Fire Brigade was created in 1974, when Avon county was created. In 1996, the county was abolished and four separate unitary authorities were created. Administration of the service was taken over by a joint fire authority made up of councillors from the four unitary authorities. In 2004, the Fire And Rescue Services Act was passed. To better reflect the changing roles and responsibilities of the fire service, Avon Fire Brigade changed its name to Avon Fire & Rescue Service.[1]

Fleur Lombard QGM (1974 – 4 February 1996[2]) was the first female firefighter to die on duty in peacetime Britain, while Avon Fire and Rescue Service were fighting a supermarket fire in Staple Hill.[3][4] The Fleur Lombard Bursary Fund provides travel grants so that a junior UK firefighter may visit the fire service of another country.[5]

Community Safety[edit]

The role of a modern fire and rescue service has increased from fighting fires to cover the core functions of 'Protecting, Preventing and Responding'. Avon Fire & Rescue Service now has a wider remit promoting community safety through events and education work, alongside attending a range of incidents and emergencies from road traffic collisions and fires, to flooding and chemical spills. The fire service aims to cut the risk of fire developing in the first place by promoting safety messages to local residents and encouraging people to have working smoke alarms.[6]

Avon Fire & Rescue Service runs community safety campaigns. The summer 2009 campaign, 'Be BBQ Safe', included a hard hitting interview with a BBQ fire burns victim who spent the previous summer in intensive care after using nitro to light his BBQ.

The Car Clear scheme was launched in 2001, with the intention of promptly removing abandoned vehicles from streets. This eliminates the possibility of arson attacks.[7][8]

Operations[edit]

In meeting their Mission, Vision and Values Avon Fire & Rescue Service utilizes a large cadre of emergency equipment. These include 81 appliances, 51 pumping appliances, four turntable ladders and 16 special appliances. Adding to the available emergency response can also be their boats, pods, fork lift trucks, a Control Emergency Evacuation Vehicle and a telescopic handler. In 2009 & 2011 Avon Fire & Rescue added 2 - Polybilt bodied Combined Aerial Rescue Platforms (CARP).[9] The first began service at the Patchway fire station and was subsequently moved to the Speedwell fire station. The second was assigned to the Bedminster fire station.[10] However both of these appliances have been withdrawn from service by July 2016 and the bodywork has been removed from the chassis to allow for the chassis to be used for new specialist appliances.

Also in 2009 to better serve the public the Yate Fire Station was upgraded to “whole-time/retained status”. Firefighters would now be ready to respond from the fire station 24/7. This was a preparedness upgrade from the previously “crewed” status of 0800 – 1700 hours daily and firefighters responding from their homes and work places.[11]

As part of the “Investing for the Future” programme which began in 2014 Kingswood Fire Station was closed for refurbishment.[12] The Kingswood Fire Station project was completed and subsequently the Speedwell Fire Station closed permanently all in 2015. The Chair of Avon Fire Authority assured the public that response standards will remain unchanged. Along with the Speedwell Fire Station the Keynsham Fire Station was also closed November 1, 2015. According to the Chairman of Avon Fire Authority, Councillor Peter Abraham "The regeneration of Keynsham town centre meant we needed to move the existing Keynsham Fire Station. This has provided us with an opportunity to amalgamate the part-time station at Keynsham and Brislington fire stations, which will both close, into a new Wholetime fire station at Hicks Gate."[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "History". Avon Fire & Rescue Service. Archived from the original on 28 July 2011. Retrieved 1 April 2011. 
  2. ^ "UK Deaths on Duty". FireNet. Archived from the original on 22 April 2008. Retrieved 1 July 2008. 
  3. ^ Shaw, Terence (2 September 1997). "Arsonist gets seven years for killing firewoman". Telegraph Group Limited. Archived from the original on 11 March 2007. Retrieved 1 July 2008. 
  4. ^ "Dying in the line of duty". BBC News. 31 October 2002. Retrieved 1 July 2008. 
  5. ^ "Fleur Lombard Bursary Fund". Avon Fire and Rescue Service. 
  6. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 20 November 2008. Retrieved 2009-09-04. 
  7. ^ "Car removal plan beats torchings". BBC News. 17 September 2002. Retrieved 23 January 2012. [...] in 2001 Avon Fire Brigade embarked upon its Car Clear scheme to remove abandoned vehicles from Bristol's streets as soon as possible. 
  8. ^ "Press Release – Car Clear saves Avon taxpayers over £6.5m". Avon Fire and Rescue Service. 6 June 2007. Retrieved 23 January 2012. Martin Glanvill, Arson Task Force manager, said: "Car Clear has been a huge success over the last six years and during this time we have seen a big reduction in the number of vehicle fires. [...]" [permanent dead link]
  9. ^ http://www.polybilteurope.com/news/view/102
  10. ^ "Avon Fire & Rescue - Our assets". Avon Fire & Rescue. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  11. ^ "Avon Fire Authority News". Newsletter (Edition Two). Creative Services Unit, Avon Fire & Rescue Services. Avon Fire & Rescue. 27 March 2009. Retrieved 16 August 2016. 
  12. ^ http://www.avonfire.gov.uk/all-areas/1200-kingswood-fire-station-closes-temporarily-for
  13. ^ http://www.avonfire.gov.uk/bath-a-north-east-somerset-news/1635-new-fire-station-at-hicks-gate-nears-completion

External links[edit]