Firefighters in bonfire safety drive

Firefighters have issued safety advice as they prepare for the busiest time of their year – Bonfire Night.

West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service has teamed up with Leeds City Council, Leeds Neighbourhood Policing teams and community groups to remind people to keep pets indoors, keep fireworks away from buildings and never use flammable liquids.

Between November 1-November 9 last year firefighters went to 106 fires across the Leeds district, which included anything from wheelie bin fires to grass fires and bonfires that were unmanaged.

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Leeds district prevention manager Lisa Toner said: “Bonfire Night can be an enjoyable time when we can all have fun.

“West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service work hard in the run up to the bonfire period to ensure residents of Leeds are kept safe from harm and are able to enjoy the occasion. We encourage residents to act responsibly during this time and to attend organised displays and bonfires”.

The service recommending people do not drink alcohol while in charge of fireworks, keep children well away and keep buckets of water to hand.

It also advised the public to make sure any fireworks meet British standards, that they are lit at arm’s length and that any remaining fireworks are kept in a sealed box.

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The service will once again roll out its Gone in a Flash campaign, which gives a stark message about the dangers of mishandling fireworks.

Superintendent David Lunn from West Yorkshire Police Protective Services said: “Bonfire Night is one of the busiest nights of the year for the police and our emergency service colleagues.

“Police officers and PCSOs will be carrying out additional patrols in neighbourhoods to provide extra reassurance, and to make sure that those committing anti-social behaviour offences are quickly dealt with.

“The force’s call handing staff will be on hand to deal with calls about anti-social behaviour involving the misuse of fireworks, and we also offer an online reporting service for incidents that do not require immediate attention.”

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Coun Mark Dobson, Leeds City Council’s executive board member with responsibility for Safer Leeds, said: “We want everyone in Leeds celebrating Bonfire Night to have a brilliant time, which is why we would ask that people please keep in mind a few simple messages to help ensure both they and others stay safe during the festivities.”

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