Partnership working key in fall of deliberate fire raising

Positive report
Positive report shows Moray has lowest number of ‘dwelling fires’ in Scotland.

DELIBERATE FIRE RAISING is down in Moray when compared to the last three years according to figures provided to Moray councillors.

At the recent meeting of the Police and Fire and Rescue Services committee, the senior fire officer for Moray, David Rout, revealed what he described as “encouraging” statistics for the region.

Of more importance, no lives were lost because of fire during the second quarter of the year, with LSO Rout reporting that partnership working was the key to reducing deliberate fires by 22%. There was a slight increase in fire casualty number from six to nine compared to the same period last year – but these also showed a 40% reduction over the three-year rolling period.

LSO Rout said: “Partnership working is key to reducing deliberate fires and we achieve this through the Moray Community Safety Hub. As part of our Thematic Actions Plans we focused on deliberate fires and visited schools to provide an input on the hazards and consequences of deliberate fire setting.

“As well as this we carried out youth engagement in known high risk area and used both traditional and social media to highlight the issues.”

The fire officer’s report said that Moray has amongst the lowest figures for dwelling fires in mainltand Scotland – 50 compared to the highest at 960.

“Results for this indicator show that we are below the average of accidental house fire casualties when compared against both the north service delivery area and Scotland as a whole,” LSO Rout said, adding: “The delivery of Home Fire Safety Visits are the key focus for us in reducing fire casualties and fatalities.

“We have worked closely with Hanover housing to deliver visits for clients and due to the success of this in Moray this will be rolled out into Aberdeenshire.

“In Moray we continue to develop partnerships through the Moray Community Safety Hub and the Moray Community Planning Partnership. And the delivery of Home Fire Safety Visits sees continuous improvement.

“We continue to engage with business owners through our fire enforcement programme, where we provide advice and guidance on how to prevent both accidental and deliberate fires in non-domestic buildings.

“In relation to secondary fires we promote the proper disposal of smoking materials through traditional and social media and in relation to deliberate secondary fires we work with partners in the Moray Community Safety Hub to highlight the dangers and consequences of deliberate fire raising.”