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Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service - Preventing, Protecting, Responding

Grass Fires in East of County

Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service attended 22 grass fires in the eastern area of the county over the Easter holidays from 29th March until 15th April 2013.

Hotspots included Castle and Glascote which each had five fires.  

“For every call we receive about a grass fire there could be a person somewhere else desperately trying to get out of a burning building or trapped in a car crash in urgent need of our assistance," Glynn Luznyj, Head of Risk Reduction.

The Service tends to see an increase in grass fires over the school holidays, which is often due to children and teenagers starting fires deliberately.

This year, Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service has re-launched its Flames Aren’t Games campaign targeting children and young adults to raise awareness of the dangers of starting fires deliberately.

Head of Risk Reduction, Glynn Luznyj said: “Young people who start grass fires seem oblivious to the fact that they are endangering their own lives as well as firefighters.

“For every call we receive about a grass fire there could be a person somewhere else desperately trying to get out of a burning building or trapped in a car crash in urgent need of our assistance.

“Our prevention work included visiting schools and youth clubs and engaging with as many youngsters as possible to warn them of the dangers of grass fires and the devastating effect they have on the environment.

“We would encourage parents to remind their children of the dangers of starting grass fires and also ensure they are aware that deliberately starting a fire of any size is treated as arson, the consequences of which if caught are very serious. Young adults convicted of deliberately starting grass fires could receive a prison sentence of up to two years or a maximum fine of £5,000. 

“Our ultimate aim is to bring about a culture change which makes fire setting socially unacceptable.”

The total number of grass fires for the county over the Easter school holiday period was 187. The northern service delivery group had the majority at 146. The eastern service delivery group had 22 and the western service delivery group 18.