Fire crews already under attack from yobs hurling bricks and fireworks (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
Fire crews already under attack from yobs hurling bricks and fireworks
Firefighters in the Bradford district are already coming under attack with bricks and fireworks thrown at them as they attend incidents in the run-up to Bonfire Night.
The attacks have been condemned by the Fire Brigades Union as “deplorable” and “worrying”.
And if they continue, two fire engines might have to be sent to incidents in the problem areas to act as a deterrent, which could leave other areas of Bradford exposed.
Dave Williams, West Yorkshire secretary of the FBU, said that dark nights and the easy availability of buying fireworks seemed to cause problems with youths acting under cover of darkness.
“These attacks have been going on for years and years but we are more adept at reporting it now,” he said.
“It is deplorable and I don’t know why the frustration is directed at the Fire Service. These attacks have started earlier this year and it is worrying.
“Using two fire engines could leave other areas of the district exposed, because we do not have a bottomless pit to keep pulling engines from and that is a problem.”
Among the incidents logged by the fire service is an attack on Fairweather Green firefighters when they were pelted with bricks as they tried to put out a fire in West Park Road, Four Lane Ends, Bradford, on Sunday night.
It was the second similar attack that day when an earlier crew had been called out to Bonn Road, Manningham, to tackle a bonfire when youths started throwing fireworks at them.
No-one was injured in either attack.
Shipley firefighters had fireworks thrown at them as they attended an incident on a building site at Shipley Fields Road and Woodhall Drive at 9.30pm on Sunday.
Detective Chief Inspector Dan Greenwood, of Bradford District Community Safety Partnership, said: “For those who continue to commit offences against the very people dedicated to their safety, I would issue this warning.
“In undertaking such attacks, you are putting other people’s lives at risk and wasting the valuable time of officers entrusted with their protection.
“We will take a no nonsense approach to such behaviour. If you are intent on causing problems, you will quickly find yourself before the Courts.
“The Police have a strong working relationship with our counterparts in the Fire Service.
“By working closely together, we aim to educate the public on the positive work which is undertaken on a daily basis to the benefit of the whole community.
“Our Neighbourhood Policing Teams for instance, regularly undertake talks with school pupils across the whole district on subjects ranging from arson to personal safety.”
District Commander Jim Butters, of West Yorkshire Fire Service, said he took any reports of attacks on his staff very seriously and they were always reported to police.
He said: “We are very conscious that our staff should be treated with respect when they’re out doing their job, which is a very difficult job.”
Mr Butters added that a previous crackdown on the problem had led to the number of incidents falling by more than half over the past couple of years.