Members of the FBU will strike between 18:00 and 22:00 tonight (Friday) and again tomorrow (Saturday), although the Isle of Wight Council is reassuring residents that its fire and rescue service will continue to respond to life-critical incidents.
During strike action, fire cover will be maintained on the Island by non-FBU members who will attend life-critical incidents such as house fires or road traffic incidents. Fire control will not be affected by the strike and will be operating as normal – people should continue to dial 999 in an emergency.
Householders and businesses are advised not to take unnecessary risks during periods of strike action and make preparations to reduce their chances of needing assistance from the fire and rescue service. This includes taking extra care when cooking or smoking, checking that smoke alarms are working and knowing what to do in an event of a fire and sharing this knowledge with others.
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Owners of non-residential premises are also being reminded to prepare by ensuring their legislative duties, such as fire risk assessments and fire safety management, are up to date.
Steve Apter, chief fire officer, said:
“We are in the festive period and it is natural more people will be celebrating this time of year, such as Christmas parties or family get togethers.”I would therefore like to reiterate the advice that members of the public and businesses should be extra vigilant during the planned period of strike action by checking fire safety arrangements and not taking unnecessary risks.”
Information about the Island’s fire and rescue service along with fire safety advice for homes and businesses can be found at www.iwight.com/fire.