Essex County Fire and Rescue Service

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Stay onside with World Cup safety during tomorrow's strike

Don’t get caught offside with fire safety when the World Cup gets underway this Thursday.

With Fire Brigade Union members to strike from 9am on Thursday June 12 until 08:59am the following day, it is important to make sure that your home and family are match ready.

Taking a few minutes before kick-off to test your smoke alarms and making sure your family has planned how to escape in the event of a fire will go a long way to making sure you don’t score any own goals.

Football fans out late watching Brazil’s opening match, potentially with pals in the pub, should take care once the celebrations are over. Make sure you stay safe on the roads, particularly if you’re tired and have had a few beers. Book a taxi home or agree who’s driving, or it could be you missing England’s first match this weekend. Grab a takeaway if you’re peckish, particularly if you’ve had one too many – anything to avoid the potential penalties of cooking when you get home. Most fires in the home start in the kitchen and cooking is responsible for around a third of house fires.

Divisional Officer Julian Ashley, ECFRS Safer Communities, said: “We want to make sure everyone is safe to enjoy the first match of the World Cup on Thursday and still in one piece to get behind England at the weekend. With reduced fire cover for 24 hours, it’s important people keep safety in the back of their mind and take a few extra precautions.

“Make sure you have the protection smoke alarms offer, take extra care on the roads and make sure that you do not allow distraction to make you into a killer in the kitchen.Be Safer, Be Slower, Be Vigilant – that’s all we ask as you enjoy your night out.

“Drinking and cooking simply don't mix. Time and again firefighters have been called to fires in the home and found a pan of food on the stove and someone sound asleep on the sofa. This is a deadly combination, just three breaths of smoke can be enough to kill. It is far safer to treat yourself to a takeaway on the way home than try and cook if you are intoxicated.”

Throughout the period of industrial action by FBU members, working Essex firefighters will be responding to 999 calls so you should continue to call in an emergency. But during periods of reduced fire cover, anything you can do to reduce the number of non-emergency calls during the strike will assist in ensuring operational resources are directed to those areas where they are most needed.

Businesses should follow up automatic fire alarms with a phone call to ensure an attendance.

Action in Essex is part of a national dispute between the Fire Brigades Union and the Government over planned pension reforms.

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