Wednesday, 25 May 2011

Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service

Service prepares for Boat Safety Week

Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service's boat safety advisor will be out and about on the Kennet & Avon Canal next week as part of national Boat Safety Week.

Canal boat safety is a priority for the Service, given the amount of waterways that run through the Wiltshire area.

Rob Buckland will be visiting boat dwellers and users along the canal between 30 May and 5 June to advise on issues such as smoke alarms, cooking, fuel storage, flares, life jackets and general water safety.

He said: "Since targeting safety messages at the boating community, we have seen a significant drop in accidental boat fires, but we don't want to be complacent. Although boat fires are less common than fires on land, they can have devastating consequences when they do occur. Boats are often in remote locations with difficult access, and when a fire starts on board, it can spread very rapidly."

Wiltshire FRS offer free boat fire risk checks, giving boaters the opportunity to gain invaluable help and advice. This includes emphasising the importance of:

· Fitting a suitable smoke alarm and testing it routinely

· Making an escape plan

· Knowing your location so you can tell the operator in an emergency

· Following fire prevention advice from the Boat Safety Scheme

Optical sensor alarms with hush buttons and 'sealed for life' batteries are recommended for boats, as are those with a British Standard ‘Kitemark’ or a LPCB ‘Horseshoe’ mark. As with smoke alarms in the home, alarms should be tested routinely and should never be disconnected.

To request boat safety advice or to request a visit, call 0800 389 7849 or contact Rob directly on 07734 483880 / email

For further information about general boating fire safety, visit

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