Fire crew callouts in Bradford district are falling sharply

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: A second arson attack in a week took place at the Cottingley Working Men’s Club earlier this year A second arson attack in a week took place at the Cottingley Working Men’s Club earlier this year

Firefighters’ work to make the district safer has led to a reduction in the number of emergencies they are called to.

And in the Bradford area, non-domestic building fires is the only area where annual targets have not been hit or exceeded.

The local data mirrors that for the West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service (WYFRS) as a whole.

Area manager for fire safety Ian Bitcon said: “We are very pleased with our performance figures across the board. We set very demanding targets and that’s all about bringing down risks throughout the organisation.

“The drop in fire-in-the-home relates to years of hard work on fire prevention, with our partners and on education. Equally, in terms of fires in non-domestic buildings, the reason numbers continue to be low is about work with communities on prevention and protection. These figures are very good news.”

The numbers will be presented to a meeting of the WYFRS authority on Friday.

A report to the authority says there has been a “dramatic reduction” in all types of incidents since 2009/10.

It says: “This year the different areas have had individual risk reduction plans. Targets are challenging to ensure risk is reduced as far as possible. The scheme has proved successful in targeting resources where risk exists in each district.

“There has been a dramatic reduction in the number of incidents for all types, testament to the level of commitment to Make Yorkshire Safer.”

The report also says targeted reduction cuts the risk to health and safety of firefighters and the community.

In Bradford in 2009-10, there were 2,778 cases of arson. In 2012-13 this had dropped to 1,514. The target for the year ended March 31, 2014, was 2,282 and the total was actually 1,694.

Rescues were down to 170 last year, from 207 in 2009-10 and 180 in 2012-13.

Total activity fell from 8,956 in 2009-10 to 6,096 in the last year – although this was up from 6,013 in 2012-13.

False alarms also dropped from 4,724 in 2009-10 to 3,058 last year and malicious false alarms were down to 125 from 227 four years ago. Home fire safety checks last year totalled 85,346 – ahead of the target figure of 73,247.

Across the district, figures were ahead of targets. The activity figure was 22,608, against a target of 28,102.

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