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New Chief for Hampshire Fire and Rescue

Dave Curry will start his new role next year Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue

A new Chief Officer has been appointed to lead Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service from the start of next year.

Dave Curry will take over from current Chief John Bonney, who is stepping down from his role after a decade in the top job.

Mr Curry, the current Deputy Chief Officer, will formally take over as Chief on 1 January 2015.

"I am delighted to be taking on the role of Chief Officer for Hampshire. It is a position that I know carries great responsibility, as our Service strives to make life safer for every resident living in the county. Stepping into the shoes of someone as respected and admired as John will be a tough challenge, but I am confident I can bring a fresh perspective and insight to the role. There is no doubt I take on the job at a time of great change in the fire service but I am looking forward immensely to the challenge of ensuring we continue to supply an exemplary service to our communities and to leading such a great organisation."

– Dave Curry, New Chief Officer

Mr Curry was chosen following a two-day selection process at the Service’s headquarters in Eastleigh this week. The transition will now take place over the coming months.

"I welcome the appointment of our new Chief Officer. I am very much looking forward to working with Dave when he formally takes up the appointment in January and supporting him in continuing the excellent work that has been achieved in making Hampshire safer and HFRS stronger."

– Hampshire Fire Authority Chairman Royston Smith

Historic flour mill saved by sprinklers

The Solent Flour Mills building Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

One of Southampton's most historic buildings was saved from serious damage yesterday thanks to its in-built sprinkler system. Fire crews were called to the Solent Flour Mills building, now operated by Rank Hovis, at Western Docks just before 10am to a fire on the second floor.

Firefighters in breathing apparatus entered the building and found the floor heavily smoke-logged. They were able to locate and extinguish the fire, which had been contained to the milling machine it started in by the sprinkler system. All staff were safely evacuated from the building and the damage limited to the affected machine.

Group Manager Ryan Thurman, officer in charge of the incident, said: 'The presence of sprinklers in the building prevented this fire from becoming a life-threatening incident and also saved the building and the business from serious damage.

'The activation of the sprinklers meant the fire was kept under control and was stopped from spreading, which helped protect not only the staff in the building but also our firefighters who went into tackle the flames.

'The effect of fire on a company can be catastrophic and systems such as the one installed at the mill can save not only lives but also businesses and jobs.'

The milling machine which was damaged by the fire Credit: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service

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Fire crews called to blaze at landfill site

Hampshire and Dorset Fire and Rescue Services were called to a fire on the Blue Haze landfill site near Ringwood early this morning.

The fire involved an area of non-hazardous waste approximately two acres in size and around 35 firefighters have worked to contain the fire and bring it under control. The cause of the fire is not yet known.

A spokesman for Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service said that smoke may be visible in the local area but it is not believed to present any threat to health. However, he said members of the public should be aware of the possible effects of smoke.

No reports of injuries after major fire in Hampshire

A spokesperson from Hampshire Fire & Rescue Service has said that no-one was injured in a major fire at a group of industrial units at Dradfield Lane in Soberton Heath overnight.

More than 70 firefighters from across the county were called to the scene following the alert shortly after 1.30am.

The units were reported to contain workshops and other businesses - all destroyed. Seven cars were also burned in the blaze.

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Portchester fire station updates on industrial fire

Around 70 firefighters tackle blaze in Hampshire

An investigation is underway in Hampshire after a fire at a complex of industrial units on Dradfield Lane in Soberton Heath.

Around 70 firefighters from Wickham, Droxford, Bishops Waltham, Fareham, Cosham, Havant, Eastleigh, Botley, Lyndhurst, Alton, Romsey, Hightown, Southsea, Petersfield, Portchester and Beaulieu were called to the site just after 1.35am.

The units and seven vehicles were destroyed in the blaze. The fire was extinguished at about 6am.

Hampshire firefighters warning about mud and water

Firefighters attend to someone who became stuck in the mud Credit: Hampshire Fire

Hampshire Fire and Rescue are warning teenagers and children about the dangers of mud and water after they attended three separate incidents in the last three days.

Three boys were rescued from mud at Bittern Manor on Sunday, another teenager was rescued from Farlington in Portsmouth and a third was rescued from mud this morning in Southampton.

Station Manager Rob Dellow said, "These incidents act as an urgent reminder of the dangers of mud and water. Luckily the casualties in these recent incidents managed to get out or were rescued by emergency services. These incidents could so easily have had devastating consequences.”

Firefighters attending the incident in Southampton Credit: Hampshire Fire

Their advice for what you should do if you do become stuck in mud include:

  • Stay calm

  • Lie down, spread your arms and legs wide apart and shout for help

  • Get someone to call 999

  • Do not stand upright or attempt any movement as this makes you sink even more quickly

  • If you see someone stuck in the mud, always go for help- do not go into the mud yourself

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