A FIRE ENGINE crew were stoned when the responded to a call-out last night in Waterford. This incident comes just one day after the Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association expressed their concerns about recent anti-social incidents involving fire service vehicles and personnel in Dublin.
IFESA National Secretary , John Kidd said that a similar incident to the one in Waterford occurred in Dublin at the weekend where a fire tender was attacked and there have also been a number of incidents where laser lights have been directed at engine drivers and crews in an apparent attempt to cause accidents.
‘These incidents are very worrying as they come ahead of Halloween, which is the busiest and most dangerous time of year for fire crews and emergency personnel,’ he said.
Both the Waterford and Tallaght incidents were serious and left fire engines out of service while being repaired.
The current level of anti-social behaviour directed at emergency personnel is a bad omen for the weeks ahead as we build up to Halloween when unfortunately it is more likely that members and fire and ambulance service will face injury and assault and have vehicles damaged.
Parents and children
He said they were appealing to parents to ensure that their children understand the important nature of their work and make sure that their children are not interfering in any way with the life-saving service they provide.
Kidd added that the government has promised to bring forward specific legislation to protect emergency personnel from assault which he said ‘would send a clear message to those involved in such attacks that they will not be tolerated and the law will deal with them harshly’.
The threat to fire and ambulance personnel will continue until the Government brings forward legislation and we are calling for that legislation now,’ said Kidd.