6.5 C
West Bridgford
Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Nottingham Hospitals: False alarms attend by Fire Service down almost 10% in 2019

With an average call-out costing £300, false calls to hospitals have effectively cost the service something in the region of £147,000.

FIRST PUBLISHED

The fire service is still attending more than one call out a day on average to Queen’s Medical Centre and City Hospital, new figures show.

The number of false alarms at the two sites has fallen by 9.7 per cent in 2019 year compared to 2018, from 543 to 490.

banner ad

With an average call-out costing £300, false calls to hospitals have effectively cost the service something in the region of £147,000.

The two hospitals make up a quarter of all the false alarms Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) received.

In 2018 the fire service implemented a call checking policy.

This meant that when an automatic fire detection system (AFDS) alerted their control room to a fire, they would call someone at the building to find out if it was a genuine fire before sending engines.

This has resulted in an 18 per cent drop in false alarms, which the fire service calls unwanted fire alarm signals (UwFS).

File image – Notts Fire & Rescue
© westbridgfordwire.com

The service says the new policy has helped it save £162,000 in the year since it was introduced.

However some categories of buildings – including hospitals – are exempt from call checking.

Other buildings exempt are hotels, care homes, historic and architecturally-significant buildings, and any other building deemed to be high risk.

Schools and special schools are not exempt from the policy.

Since the introduction of the revised policy, NFRS has attended 2510 calls from automatic fire detection signals. This compares to 3051 calls attended in the same period of the previous year.

Of the 2510 calls which fire crews attended, 2169 were found to be false alarms once the service arrived.

The fire service says 1365 (54 per cent) of these incidents were attended by one fire engine, which “reduces the risk to road users and our personnel, increasing efficient use of time and effective use of our resources.”

When responding to the 2510 call-outs from automatic fire detection devices, only 128 were actual fires, and there were 146 incidents which needed further attention.

The issue has been discussed by the fire authority at a meeting today (Friday, January 17).

A spokesperson for the service said: “Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service has experienced a significant reduction in the number of unwanted fire signals compared to the same period last year; this is largely due to the work the service has carried out with partner agencies and local businesses.

“The service continues to work closely with partners to review attendances at incidents and is proactively engaging with businesses to help them manage their practices.

“This involves written communication, visits to businesses and audits when needed.”

Rob Mackie, the fire safety manager at Nottingham University Hospitals, said: “Our fire safety team continues to work closely with Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service to provide training and awareness on the fire risks across our hospitals.

“This includes raising awareness with staff on the common causes of false alarms to help reduce the number of fire alarms being triggered.

“While all of our staff have annual mandatory fire safety training and we provide specialist fire warden training for departments who are a focal point for any local fire safety issues, there is more that we can and will do to ensure that we reduce the number of times the fire service are called to our hospitals unnecessarily.”

Subscribe to our daily newsletter

Get all the day's stories and events from The Wire delivered in ONE email every day

22,883FansLike
15,258FollowersFollow
24,004FollowersFollow
347SubscribersSign Up
 

TOP STORIES

LATEST: 25 Feb: Nottinghamshire Roads Closed – Flooding

Page updated at 16:13 on 24 February 2020.Please note that disruption across Nottinghamshire due to flooding is an ongoing situation and details are...

A52 Clifton Bridge: Rushcliffe MP requests urgent meeting with Transport Secretary

Rushcliffe MP Ruth Edwards has written to the Transport Secretary asking for an urgent meeting to discuss the A52 Clifton bridge repair delays which...