New road safety strategy for the Liverpool City Region given the green light

The Liverpool City Region’s Road Safety Strategy 2017-2020 was approved at today’s Liverpool City Region Combined Authority meeting.  This three year strategy aims to reduce the number of those killed and seriously injured on Merseyside’s roads.

The plan outlines the methods and measures that will be used by partners who make up the Merseyside Road Safety Partnership – Merseyside District Councils, Merseytravel, Merseyside Police, the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, North West Ambulance Service, Highways England, and the health sector.  This has also been shared with the Cheshire Road Safety Partnership covering the Halton borough, who will be adopting a similar approach.

The measures and methods used to help achieve safer roads include education (promoting road safety messages through targeted campaigns and training), enforcement (ensuring road users adhere to safety measures that have been implemented, particularly driving at a safe speed) and engineering (identifying and introducing remedial measures to improve road safety and ensuring new highway projects operate safely).

Cllr Liam Robinson, Transport portfolio lead for the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority said “We all have a role to play to ensure our roads are safer and the number of accidents and injuries on our roads are reduced.  We can play our part, but we also need our residents and road users to play their part too by listening to and taking on board the information around road safety awareness and adhering to road safety law, particularly around speed limits and to not be distracted whilst driving, for example, by using your mobile phone.”

The strategy also includes targeted action plans to keep cyclists, motorcycle users, senior road users and pedestrians safe on and around Merseyside’s roads.

Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram added “I want the Liverpool City Region to be safe for all road users, cyclists, motorcyclists and pedestrians alike and through collaborative working, we can achieve more by pooling our resources and expertise.  Through this strategy, all agencies and road users have shared goals to work towards reducing the number of casualties and fatalities on our roads.”

Jane Kennedy, Merseyside Police and Crime Commissioner, said “Every death or serious injury on the roads of Merseyside is one too many. By working together to manage education, enforcement and engineering, we hope that Merseyside’s roads will be safer.

“From an enforcement perspective, Merseyside Police will play its part by ensuring those disregarding road safety are robustly dealt with through the appropriate penalties, but we can reduce the need for enforcement action through better education, awareness and understanding the consequences if people continue to flout the law.”

Take a look at the full strategy here.

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service offer Advice to local residents

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service is providing advice and reassurance to residents who may be concerned about the safety of high-rise buildings following the fire at Grenfell Tower in London.

Although Sefton Council doesn’t own any high rise buildings they are keen to share the advice.

Merseyside Fire & Rescue carry out a risk-based inspection programme of all premises, including high-rise residential premises, to ensure that they comply with current legislation. They also carry out regular training exercises in high-rise buildings to make sure people are ready to deal with fires of this type.

The advice for residents living in high-rise accommodation is:

Know Your Escape Plan

  • Make sure you are familiar with emergency evacuation procedures provided by the landlord or owner for your building.
  • Make an escape plan so that you and your family know what to do if there is a fire in your flat.
  • Practice this plan, make sure everyone understands it and knows where the door key is.

Should a fire Break Out

  • If it is too dangerous to follow your planned escape route because stairs and hallways are full of smoke, ring 999 and stay inside the safest room. Keep the doors closed and use towels or bedding to block the smoke at the bottom of the door.
  • Use the stairs, not the lift, when leaving the building in the event of a fire.
  • If there is a fire in another flat in the building, you are usually safest in your own home unless you are affected by the heat or smoke.
  • If there is a fire, never assume that someone else has called 999 – make the call yourself.

Fire safety in your Building

  • Keep exits and passageways clear of any obstructions.
  • Ensure doors to stairways are not damaged or faulty and report any defects promptly to the landlord or owner for your building.
  • Close all internal doors at night to prevent the spread of fire.
  • Never tamper with internal fire mains (dry riser) inlets on landings. These provide water to firefighters in an emergency and could cost lives if not functioning properly.
  • If you see a dry riser vandalised, report it immediately to the landlord or owner for your building.
  • Never use or store bottled gas cylinders in high-rise flats.
  • Never park so you block access to high-rise flats. Access roads are designed so fire engines can get as close as possible to fight fires.
  • Don’t start cooking if you are very tired or have drank a lot of alcohol- never use chip pans, use oven chips instead.
  • If you smoke, make sure you put cigarettes out properly, and don’t smoke in bed or while sleepy.
  • Check your smoke alarms regularly.

If family members have any concerns over elderly or vulnerable relatives living in high rise premises then call Fire Service Direct 0800 731 5958 or email fireservicedirect@merseyfire.gov.uk

Sefton’s Beach Safe 2017 initiative sails into action

The Beach Safe 2017 campaign is under way. The initiative by Sefton Council in partnership with Merseyside Police, Merseyside Fire and Rescue and the National Trust will promote safe use of the beaches along Sefton’s 22 miles of coast.

They are encouraging people to be aware of potential risks and dangers of being on the beach, as well as being respectful to the environment and other beach users. The Beach Safe campaign is an annual summer collaboration of partners hoping to ensure everybody stays safe and enjoys our beautiful coast.

The campaign is comprised of several safety messages from checking high tides and cleaning up after your dog, to not having BBQ’s and remembering to wear sun screen.

A Sefton Council spokesperson said,

“We are delighted to work with partners again to deliver these important messages. We want all beach users to be safe and to have a great time enjoying the Sefton coast. We ask that beach users be respectful to each other and the environment.”

 

Southport Lifeboat crew help kickstart Emergency Services mental health campaign

Southport lifeboat crew were called out to an unusual task last weekend as they ‘rescued’ a special package from the sea near Blackpool.

The team from the Southport Offshore Rescue had been asked to help kickstart the Merseyside leg of a special national baton relay promoting mental health in the British Emergency Services – bringing the baton ashore at Southport Promenade before taking part in a special procession along Lord Street.

The baton was then passed to the team from Merseyside Fire and Rescue to be held overnight at the Manchester Road Fire station before resort paramedics gave the baton a guard of honour through Ainsdale and Formby before it was passed on to emergency services in Bootle.

Taking place until September 22 this year, the relay will see staff from emergency services across the UK, including fire and rescue, police, ambulance, prison services and the NHS, carry a baton across England.

The baton will travel to different cities throughout its journey and each weekend local emergency services will hand it to another emergency service team for it to be taken to its next location.

On Saturday April 29, the Merseyside leg of the relay launched from Blackpool Promenade when the baton was taken to Southport Community Fire Station on Manchester Road by crew from Southport Lifeboat.

The next day the baton was placed in a vintage ambulance and traveled in convoy with three fire engines and vehicles from HM Coastguard Southport along Lord Street in Southport through Ainsdale, Formby, Ince Blundell, Thornton and Netherton before arriving at Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service headquarters on Bridle Road in Bootle.

Entitled ‘Our Blue Light’ the campaign is designed to raise awareness of mental health and the stigma around it.

Southport Merseyside Fire and Rescue Watch Manager Steve Bousfield was in charge of coordinating the resort leg of the relay.

He said: “Our Blue Light aims to bring our services together, as an emergency and essential family, to improve mental health and reduce the stigma surrounding it.

“At the same time we are also raising awareness of general health and wellbeing and how we can improve this?.

“The relay will be stopping off at different cities and location throughout its journey.

“Every weekend there will be an event, with the local emergency and essential services and community groups getting the torch and taking it to the next location, via any means, whether that be run, cycle or even kayaking!”

Agencies launch community campaign across Merseyside for Arson Awareness Week

Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service is joining forces with partner agencies to highlight the dangers of deliberately setting fires as part of Arson Awareness Week.

The initiative, which runs from Monday March 20 to Friday March 24, will see Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service team up with Merseyside Police, local authorities across Merseyside and housing providers to highlight the consequences of setting fires.

Teams of staff, advocates, PCSOs and volunteers will visit homes and businesses in Kirkdale, Everton, Litherland, Kirkby, Speke, St Helens town centre and Egremont in Wirral throughout the week to carry out Home Fire Safety Checks, distribute information leaflets and identify residents who may be vulnerable to arson attacks.

They will also provide skips to remove fly-tipped rubbish from communities, give advice to business owners about waste management, engage with homeless people to raise awareness of the dangers of fires and provide support to residents concerned about anti-social fire setting in their neighbourhoods.

‘Mini’ Police Officers from Hatton Hill Primary School in Litherland will join the teams around Litherland to hand out safety leaflets and give advice.

Station Manager Paul Kay, Arson Reduction Co-ordinator for Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service, said: “This campaign will see organisations from across our county come together to raise awareness of the dangers of arson and the impact fires have on our communities.

“Arson is a serious criminal offence which puts people’s lives at risk, causes damage to homes, businesses and community facilities and impacts on wildlife and the environment.
“It can range from mindless criminal damage to a deliberately-targeted attack but, either way, the potentially deadly consequences remain the same.

“If fire appliances are called out to deliberate fires this may delay the response to other emergencies, which could endanger lives elsewhere.

“We want to make people aware that deliberately setting fires in a public place is arson and, if caught, those responsible may face legal action.”

Merseyside Police Chief Superintendent Peter Costello, Head of Local Policing, said: “Merseyside Police is delighted to be supporting Arson Awareness Week, and we will be carrying out extensive work alongside MFRS and our other local partners throughout the week.

“We will also be using this as an opportunity to target serious and organised criminals operating across the county, in order to disrupt their criminal activity.

“The consequences of arson can be catastrophic in our communities, putting lives and businesses under threat and greatly impacting on the response of Merseyside’s emergency services.

“Educating people about the dangers of arson in all its forms is vital in reducing this impact. Alongside MFRS, we will robustly investigate incidents of arson and prosecute all those identified as being responsible.”

Cllr George Davies, Wirral’s Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: “Arson attacks not only put lives at risk but also people’s homes, businesses and local facilities.

“In Wirral we have been working closely with Merseyside Fire Service to combat the problem of fires in fly-tipped rubbish.

“We would urge residents to report any suspicious activity immediately, particularly the initial dumping of rubbish as this can give us the opportunity to get it removed before an even more serious incident happens.”

Cllr Trish Hardy, Sefton Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Housing, said: “Sadly, deliberate fires take up a large amount of firefighters’ time which could easily be avoided.

“Many fires are started deliberately and this irresponsible behaviour needs to stop so supporting Arson Awareness Week can really help raise awareness about this.

“It is great to see pupils at Hatton Hill Primary School in Litherland getting involved in the project and I hope that it will have a lasting impression on them and their local communities.”

Cllr Eddie Connor, Knowsley Council’s Cabinet Member for Neighbourhoods, said: “We are delighted to be working with Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service to help raise awareness of this important issue. Arson can not only cost lives, but also costs a lot of money in repairs and we will do everything we can to support this campaign.”