South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue

South Yorkshire Fire and Rescue
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Fire Authority approve Council Tax precept rise

The fire service’s governing Fire Authority has decided to increase its portion of Council Tax by 1.99% next year, at its budget setting meeting on Monday.

South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue says the increase will help to support investments its making to its frontline service- including the recruitment of additional firefighters- as well as helping it to prepare for potentially more uncertain times ahead.

Householders in Band D will pay £76.07 per year for their Fire and Rescue Service- an increase of about three pence per week compared to the current rate of £74.59. The decision to increase council tax will raise around £530,000 in annual funding for the fire service- the equivalent of around 15 firefighters.

The service outlined the financial risks it faces in its medium term financial plan, which includes uncertainty around the impact of Coiv-19 on its council tax base and central government funding.

Fire Authority Members made their decision on Council Tax at the fire and rescue authority meeting on Monday 22 February. You can view the webcast here.

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High volume pumps deployed to support removal of surface water in Sykehouse

Firefighters are deploying two high volume pumps to Sykehouse in Doncaster in a bid to aid the removal of surface water which is currently lying on flood plains in the area.

River levels in the area are falling and existing drainage pumping arrangements are working well.

However, South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue has deployed the pumps- one of which is being sent by Nottinghamshire Fire & Rescue- to support the speedy removal of the water and to help reassure communities living nearby.

The fire service has been working with Doncaster Council and the Environment Agency on the deployment says it expects to be in the area for around 48 hours.

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Campaign launched to curb South Yorkshire cooking fires

Firefighters are urging people to stop leaving their cooking unattended in a bid to crack down on house fires across the county.

New figures, released by South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue, show that half of all house fires across South Yorkshire last year started in the kitchen.

An even deeper look into the issue, fire officers say, shows that the majority of these fires could be prevented and start when people leave pans on the hob or food in the oven.

The service is now appealing to people across Sheffield, Barnsley, Rotherham and Doncaster to ‘stand by your pan’ to avoid a kitchen fire disaster.

As part of the campaign, officers are also asking people not to cook after consuming alcohol and, instead, get a takeaway.

“Public awareness and safety around house fires has increased dramatically in recent years but one bad habit we haven’t quite kicked, yet, is leaving cooking unattended,” said Group Manager Matt Gillatt, deputy head of the joint police and fire community safety team.

“Pretty much every kitchen fire we attend originates from an oven or hob and, generally, the fires have started because something has been left on.

“Examples range from a cooker being left to pre-heat to somebody falling asleep whilst their food is cooking and, whilst we know it’s not usually intentional, fire happens fast.

“We don’t expect people to stare at their food whilst it cooks and clearly pre-heating an oven is fairly standard, this isn’t an issue.

“What’s an issue is where people leave the kitchen entirely and either forget that the cooker is on or get distracted with something else, such as the TV or having a quick shower.

“What’s also an issue is where people get in the kitchen and start cooking having had something to drink – this is never a good idea and often ends up in the worst kind of fires.”

The service’s new campaign comes off-the-back of a smoke alarm push in which firefighters urged people to ensure they have working smoke alarms on every level of their home.

It’s based on figures that show there were 230 cooking fires, across South Yorkshire, in 2020 – making up 47 percent of the 491 house blazes attended by firefighters last year.

“Our message is really clear – don’t leave cooking unattended and don’t cook drunk. This isn’t just about reducing pressure on us, it’s about keeping yourself safe,” added Matt.

“What people often don’t realise is that getting hurt is just one risk when it comes to kitchen fires – very often you can escape harm but be left with a huge bill for redecorating.”

More information on cooking fire safety, and details of how to book a free fire service home safety visit, can be found on the service’s website, www.syfire.gov.uk.

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