Category Archives: News

Brigade supports “Dying to Work” campaign

Signing the Charter (l to r) Dave Howe, Fire Brigades Union; Councillor Jan Brunton Dobson, Chair, Cleveland Fire Authority; Beth Farhat, Regional Secretary, Northern Region TUC, Eddie Jeffries, Unison and Chief Fire Officer Ian Hayton

Cleveland Fire Brigade has pledged to support, protect and guide any staff diagnosed with a terminal illness.

By signing-up to the TUC “Dying to Work” charter the Brigade continues to recognise that additional support and understanding is needed.

Ian Hayton, Chief Fire Officer Cleveland Fire Brigade, said: “It was an easy decision to sign-up and make a formal commitment to the work we already do. Sometimes people have to work through very difficult circumstances and it is our job to make sure they get the help and support they need and are treated with the utmost dignity.”

Chair of Cleveland Fire Authority Councillor Jan Brunton-Dobson added: “Cleveland Fire Brigade is a caring organisation that cares for the public, local communities and staff and we are delighted to pledge our support for such a hugely important campaign.”

The Dying to Work charter outlines:

• Recognising terminal illness requires support and understanding

• Terminally ill employees are secure in the knowledge that they will be supported

• They have security of work, peace of mind and the right to choose the best course of actions for themselves and families

• All employees battling terminal illness have adequate employment protection

Award for winter campaign

Cleveland Fire Brigade’s annual winter Stay Safe and Warm campaign has received a national accolade and a £10,000 cash boost.

The campaign, now in its tenth year, has been given an Energy Impact Award from National Energy Action and British Gas, recognising and rewarding innovation and best practice.

The award, which comes with a £10,000 prize, will fund more heaters and blankets and other new equipment as well as help set-up up a “fuel bank” to provide an emergency fuel top-up for those in greatest need

Phil Lancaster, Director of Community Protection at Cleveland Fire Brigade, said: “Little or no heating can be a matter of life and death and no one should be in that position. But we are here to help and this award is testament to the dedication and hard work of all those involved. This extra funding will go alongside the funding we already receive from our four local authorities, which allows us to provide this vital life-saving service.

  “It is not just older people who are vulnerable and at risk of cold weather during the winter months. Every year we are alerted to a number of families who simply cannot afford to put their heating on and often their young children have to go to bed in their clothes to stay warm.

 “We are ready to give any support that may be needed to ensure everyone stays safe and warm in in winter.”

Electric heaters, thermal blankets, flasks and fleecy mattress covers are available through the Stay Safe and Warm campaign and there is also advice on managing fuel bills and referrals for free boiler repairs or replacements where funding is available.

The campaign, which runs annually from October 1 to March 31, is led by Cleveland Fire Brigade and sees many agencies working together to provide advice and support.

Organisations involved include Age UK Teesside, Hartlepool, Stockton, Redcar & Cleveland and Middlesbrough Councils, Middlesbrough Environment City, Middlesbrough and Stockton MIND and Warm Homes Healthy People, Stockton.

The campaign comes as fire brigades across the country together with NHS England, Public Health England, Age UK and the Local Government Association have pledged to tackle health and social problems together to try and reduce the number of winter hospital admissions and winter deaths and improve the health and wellbeing of our residents.

Stay Safe and Warm campaign

  • Who is eligible?  Anyone who is at risk from the effects of cold, either long or short term
  • What does it cost – it’s a free service to anyone living in Cleveland
  • Not means tested
  • What do we offer? 24 hour, seven day a week support and a response within an hour of being contacted
  • What do we provide?  Portable heaters, electric blankets, thermal blankets, flasks, wind-up lanterns
  • Partners: We can put people in touch with other agencies who can provide other support
  • What age group do we cover? The youngest person we have helped is 16. The oldest 94. There is no restriction.
  • Ring 01429 874063 or go to www.clevelandfire.gov.uk/warm

Cleveland Fire Brigade launches strategy in drive for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion

Signing up to new strategy (l to r): Beth Farhat, Regional Secretary, Northern Region TUC; Dave Howe, Fire Brigade’s Union; Chief Fire Officer Ian Hayton, Councillor Jan Brunton Dobson, Chair, Cleveland Fire Authority and Edwin Jeffries and Duncan Rothwell from Unison

Cleveland Fire Brigade has formally launched a new drive for equality, diversity and inclusion in a bid to help build stronger communities and an inclusive workforce

Chief Fire Officer Ian Hayton said: “Our world is changing, our communities are diverse and dynamic and we need to adapt and respond accordingly if we are to continue to keep people safe and build a brighter future for all.

We want to create a work environment of equal opportunities that is free from discrimination and where people thrive and where everyone recognises the positive contribution and value of diversity.

This commitment will help us build on the work we have already been doing and also learning from our experiences.”

The new Equality, Diversion and Inclusion Strategy for the next four years commits to having accessible services that are responsive to the needs of diverse communities, a diverse workforce and a working environment that celebrates and supports equality, diversity and inclusion.

Chair of Cleveland Fire Authority, Councillor Jan Brunton Dobson, said: “As a fire and rescue authority, we firmly believe we can make a real positive difference to the safety and quality of lives of people in our communities and this strategy will help move that forward.”

Other key areas in the strategy include having political and professional leaders who promote equality, diversity and inclusion and procurement to advance equality of opportunity and secure efficiencies

To find out more about the strategy and the work we are doing please log onto: www.clevelandfire.gov.uk/about/equality-diversity-inclusion/

Cleveland Fire Brigade supports Register My Appliance Day

People are reminded to improve their home safety by taking the simple step of registering their fridges, freezers and washing machines on the new streamlined version of www.registermyappliance.org.uk.

Developed by the Association of Manufacturers of Domestic Appliances (AMDEA), the portal now optimised for smartphones makes registration of over 60 leading brands of old and new appliances faster and easier via mobile, tablet or PC.

As part of the national fire safety campaign, Cleveland Fire Brigade is keen to ensure that every UK household is encouraged to take this very simple step, and made aware of how it can help to protect their homes and families.

Many brands are running prize draws to encourage owners to look around their kitchens and register their older appliances too.  Every registration increases the chances of winning a luxury prize and ensures the traceability of these products. Most makes accept registration of large appliances up to 12 years old.

For manufacturers and fire and rescue services increasing home safety has never been more important.  With an estimated 93 million (92.7m.) wet and cold appliances currently in use in our homes, keeping track of our fridges, freezers and washing machines is a crucial safety precaution. By taking just a few minutes to register domestic appliances directly with the manufacturer, via the user-friendly portal www.registermyappliance.org.uk, householders can be contacted quickly if a recall or free safety repair is ever needed.

Despite intensive efforts by the campaign’s many influential supporters, accurate ownership data on white goods remains sparse.  New YouGov research, shows that less than half of owners (46%) register the fridges they have bought, primarily appliances aren’t registered because they don’t think it’s necessary (39%). Similarly, almost a third (29%) of households found a fridge in situ when they moved into their current property, and although they continue using it, the great majority (80%) have no idea if it is registered. Very few people (15%) realise that they can register an appliance with the manufacturer,   even if they acquired it second hand or inherited it.

The latest YouGov survey also revealed that our most important material possessions are our phones and cars, followed closely by our fridges and washing machines. Yet, unlike our 32 million cars, the majority of the large white goods, that we keep running for years without a health check, are untraceable. Women placed a higher importance on their washing machine than their car. Despite this, only half (52%) of these prized purchases were registered.

Phil Lancaster, Director of Community Protection at Cleveland Fire Brigade urges the public to register products they may have bought in the sales and not to forget the older appliances they have been using for many years:

We have been working hard to help our local community to understand why registration is so important. In the New Year we also plan to help the elderly and more vulnerable people to register their appliances, to ensure they are first in line if a safety modification is ever needed.

These large powerful machines are indispensable, yet we tend to take them for granted and forget they are there.  It is also vital that they are installed and used according to the instructions, and advice on safe usage is also available on the Register My Appliance portal.”

On Register my Appliance Day manufacturers are sending reminders to over 4 million consumers to register their products. While supporters, the Local Government Association, RoSPA, Trading Standards, Citizens Advice, Electrical Safety First, leading private and social landlord groups are using internal communications, regional press and social media to promote www.registermyappliance.org.uk

Water rescue unit launched

Cleveland firefighters are equipped to tackle flooding incidents throughout the UK with the launch of a new water rescue unit.

The fully-fitted support vehicle includes a inflatable boat, ten and five person rescue sleds, two inflatable walkways, decontamination spray units and first aid which includes oxygen therapy

The unit has a capacity to carry out of water rescues in a flood environment for up to four days and be self-sustainable for up to ten hours a day. It can store food rations to keep a crew of six going for up to 72 hours.

There is also convertible office space for incident command centre and crew welfare.

Alan Brown, Flood Tactical Advisor, Cleveland Fire Brigade, said: “The unit is equipped to deal with any type of flooding event. It can be utilised to rescue  people from homes in flooded streets and communities, bring in supplies and support other emergency services in all aspects of water rescue as seen in recent years in Cleveland and  across the country in York Cumbria ,Somerset and Berkshire.

Crews are equipped to assist in rescues from both ice and mud. It has already been operational in recent rescues on the River Tees”.

The new unit is based at Thornaby station. Cleveland Fire Brigade has a rescue craft permanently moored at the Tees Barrage which provides rapid response to reports of incidents on the river, both upstream and downstream.