East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is asking residents to take extra care during the latest round of industrial action by the Fire Brigades Union between 6pm and 10pm today (Friday December 13) and tomorrow.
FBU members will strike in their ongoing dispute with the Government over pensions.
Although crews made up of non-FBU members and retained firefighters will continue to respond to emergencies during the strike, cover will inevitably be reduced and priority will be given to calls where lives are at risk.
Advice remains the same. If you have a fire, get out, stay out and dial 999. Here is the service’s simple advice to help keep you safe in and around the home.
Fit smoke alarms on each floor in your home, keep them dust-free, and test them once a week. Consider buying a ten-year alarm; otherwise change the batteries every year.
Take special care when you are tired or when you’ve been drinking.
Make an escape plan so that everyone in your home knows how to escape in the event of a fire.
Keep the exits from your home clear of obstructions so that people can make their escape if there is a fire. Make sure that occupants can find keys for doors and windows easily.
Take care in the kitchen - accidents while cooking account for 59% of fires in the home. Never leave young children unsupervised in the kitchen.
Take extra care when cooking with hot oil; if you don’t use one already, consider buying an electric thermostatically controlled deep fat fryer.
Never leave lit candles unattended and ensure that they are in a secure holder on a heat-resistant surface away from flammable materials.
Don’t overload electrical sockets. Remember one socket - one plug!
Keep matches and lighters out of reach of children.
Don’t leave the TV or other electrical appliances on standby as this could cause a fire. Always switch it off and unplug it when not in use.
Ensure cigarettes are stubbed out and disposed of carefully and never smoke in bed.
This is the first strike since FBU members voted to take ‘action short of a strike’ in a second ballot that closed on 4th December. This means that firefighters can take additional non-strike-based forms of industrial action, including the refusal to undertake duties that they are not contracted to perform. The FBU has not yet announced any plans for action short of a strike.