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Thursday, 24 April 2014

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Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service reveals more than 40 per cent of calls are false alarms

Cumbria Fire and Rescue Service has revealed that more than 40 per cent of incidents attended are false alarms.

During 2012/13 firefighters were called 4,435 incidents of which 1,837 were false.

Causes include technical faults or human error, controlled burning being reported as a fire incident and malicious hoax calls.

Cumbria’s Chief Fire Officer Ian Cartwright said: “When well over a third of the incidents we’re called to are false alarms, it’s clear we’re spending too much time dealing with avoidable situations.

“Of course when we’re attending false alarms it also means we might not be available for more serious fires and road traffic collisions where lives could be at risk.”

Councillor Barry Doughty, Cumbria County Council’s cabinet member for Safer and Stronger Communities, said: “We really need people to assist us in reducing the number of false alarms and having automatic alarms regularly maintained and not making hoax calls is the best way to help.

“Making hoax calls is a criminal offence and we work closely with the police to catch those responsible.”

While the number of false alarms accounts for more than 40 per cent of incidents attended by CFRS, the county has seen a major decrease in the number of actual fires – a 47 per cent reduction between 2007-08 and 2012-13.

As a result, CFRS is currently consulting on proposals for better reflecting current risk patterns and shaping the service to the dangers that actually exist.

For more visit www.cumbria.gov.uk/ourfuturethis

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