Fire chief warns of the hazards of great outdoors

Eastbourne Borough Commander Dave Sheppard
Eastbourne Borough Commander Dave Sheppard

As part of the Fire Kills campaign, East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service is asking people to stay safe this summer as they make the most of the weather and enjoy the great outdoors, whether camping, cooking or exploring.

“A long hot summer is what we hope for,” said Dave Sheppard, the Eastbourne Borough Commander of East Sussex Fire and Rescue Service.

“However like many changes in activity, it can bring risks.

“If you’re intending to take out your tent, ready your rucksack or get your caravan back on the road, you should go armed with some safety advice before heading for the great outdoors. By following the Fire Kills campaign’s top tips you can ensure that your great adventure is a safe and enjoyable one.

“With tents, allow at least six metres of spacing between tents and caravans and ensure they are away from parked cars to reduce the risk of fire spreading, never use candles in or near a tent – torches are safer and don’t smoke inside tents. With open fires, if you must have one, it should be downwind, at least 10m from the tent, build a stack that will collapse inwards whilst burning, do not leave fires unattended and make sure that fires are fully extinguished after use.

“It may all sound a bit daunting but it needn’t be, most of this advice is common sense. From time to time we all need reminders; so enjoy the countryside and your recreation and be safe.

“And if you discover a fire do not be tempted to investigate. Leave the area as quickly as possible and call 999.”