PICTURES: Rudolf joins firefighters for a charity fun run

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Uckfield firefighters joined enthusiastic athletes to prove their fitness by taking part in a five or 10k fun run through Buxted Park last Saturday.

The Reindeer Run was organised by Verna Lingard on behalf of Uckfield Fire Station to raise money for their Fire Fighters’ Charity.

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It wasn’t just the distance or the climb that runners had to contend with - weeks of rain had reduced the ground to mud and 36 brave runners slid their way to the finishing line.

Winner of the five kilometre race was William Izard who came in at 29 minutes, 40 seconds with 10k winner ‘Papa Smurf’ clocking in at 47minutes. 47 seconds.

The Buxted Park Reindeer Run raised £450 which will be divided between the Fire Fighters’ Charity and East Sussex Fire and Rescue’s Sports Activities Association.

But before the run took place, firefighters were called upon in their professional capacity to deal with a wide range of incidents which tested their training to the utmost.

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On Wednesday, December 2 Uckfield’s bulk water carrier was mobilised to Fairlight near Hastings at 2.45pm to support crews from the town who were dealing with a large house fire.

The next day they encountered a fire in a Maresfield wood yard which was extinguished by about 11.25pm.

Proving just how extensive their abilities are, one of the Uckfield crews was summoned to a house in Halland at 12.50pm on Friday, December 4 where they had to release a woman who had got herself locked in her bathroom.

On Saturday, December 5 at 9.05am the bulk water carrier was once again mobilised to the Hastings area where it was used to support local crews dealing with a blaze at a school at Guestling.

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An Uckfield crew provided cover for fellow teams at Crowborough at 5.20am whey they were called to a house fire in the town. And on the same day they extinguished a large, unattended bonfire on a demolition site close to Palehouse Common, Framfield just before 5pm.

On Wednesday, December 9 two people were taken to hospital who had been suffering from smoke inhalation following a fire in a caravan in Framfield at 10.30pm. Two crews from Uckfield attended and put out the fire which had involved electrical equipment.

Firefighters administered oxygen therapy to the casualties until an ambulance arrived.

One crew was called to the first floor of an Uckfield house at 2.15pm on Sunday, December 13 where they had to help ambulance personnel to carry a bariatric patient who required admission to hospital. Bariatric patients - patients who have a high body mass - require specialist handling and teams of firecrews are often called upon to provide professional help.

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During the past fortnight Uckfield firefighters have also attended calls to fire alarms sounding from properties in Uckfield, Ridgewood, Newick and Sheffield Park.

Before the Christmas festivities begin, they are urging families to remember vital safety tips to ensure everyone enjoys a risk-free holiday.

For example, they say, make sure someone in in the room and the home at all times if any candles are lit. They also advise people to check tree lights and outdoor light ropes, ensure they are safe and once again, turn them off if there is no-one at home to avoid an electrical fire.

Paper and any flammable decorations should be kept well clear of electrical installations, candles and fires.

They are still anxious to assure residents that they are willing to conduct home safety visits, designed to raise awareness of safety matters in the home. These include the fitting of free smoke alarms if required and can be undertaken by firefighters from your own local fire station.

If you would like any home safety advice, ring: 0800 7069 or Google: Home Safety Visits. Firecrews wish everyone living in and around Wealden a very happy and safe Christmas.

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