Oxfordshire Fire Department film recalls residents’ safety challenges during pandemic


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The Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service has released a new short film designed to highlight recent collaborations with other emergency services and showcase new ways of working over the past year .

Residents can now count on a more experienced and better prepared fire department, thanks to the knowledge acquired by the teams while adapting to the challenges of the recent pandemic.

The film is used as part of the service initiation and training resources. It will also be shared on social media to thank the residents and show the wide range of community safety initiatives offered by the Oxfordshire firefighters.

Gabby Heycock, Zone Manager for Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Services, said: ‘Covid-19 has been really tough. Not only in the way we had to respond to these emergencies that we will always have to go – using personal protective equipment and adapting our approach – but also, we have helped our partners and organizations across the county to cope. to the challenges of the pandemic.

“We’ve done things like delivering laptops to schools and driving ambulances for South Central Ambulance Services. We have also used our managerial skills to set up test centers. And we did all of this while maintaining an emergency service for the public in Oxfordshire. “

Local colleagues from various parts of the fire service appear in the film, including Peter Savage of the Home and Community Safety Team. He explains how, over the past year, his team has visited homes of vulnerable and high-risk residents, giving them safety advice and support on how to reduce the risk of fires on their properties. Face masks, hand sanitizers, and a safe distance were essential when entering every home.

Firefighters Dave Bragg, Graham Reading and Antony Lampitt – based at Rewley Road Fire Station in Oxford – are interviewed, speaking about the camaraderie between the teams and how they missed out on routine interaction with communities, reduced due to social distancing.

The Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service has released a new short film designed to highlight recent collaborations with other emergency services and showcase new ways of working over the past year .  (Image from Oxfordshire County Council)

The Oxfordshire County Council Fire and Rescue Service has released a new short film designed to highlight recent collaborations with other emergency services and showcase new ways of working over the past year . (Image from Oxfordshire County Council)

Pete Mackay of the Fire Department’s Prevention Team shares his experiences working with County Council for community testing. He proudly recalls how setting up testing centers is something completely new for everyone involved: “A bunch of disparate people who have never worked together before”, coming together as a team to help save lives.

Becky Rimmer, Operational Watch Manager at Faringdon Fire Station, sums up the passion and determination of every firefighter and said: “I’m no hero. It’s my job. I love it. For me, the job is to go out and help my community. It’s all I ever wanted.

And the community seems to like Becky and her team. She says they get cakes and fish ‘n’ chips from grateful residents! Becky generously describes this as “amazing.” And his team united like a “second family”.

Gabby Heycock speaks directly to residents, to reassure them, in the film’s closing sequence in which she said: ‘During Covid, the Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service worked hard to protect you. As the pandemic draws to a close, hopefully we’re still here for you. “

The film was produced by Stone Barrell, an Oxford-based creative agency.

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