Fourth convoy of fire fighting equipment from the UK is now on its way to Ukraine
Another convoy of fire fighting equipment is now on its way to Ukraine from the UK. This is the fourth fire and rescue service convoy to leave the UK, providing vital life-saving equipment to fire fighters in Ukraine. This means UK fire and rescue services and the fire sector have now donated 69 fire appliances and tens of thousands of items of life-saving kit and equipment. Leaving the UK shores on Saturday, 8 October 2022, eight fire appliances, driven by fire and rescue service volunteers, a 4x4 vehicle, hydraulic cutters, a range of PPE including helmets, clothing, boots and eye protection, ladders, radios, dry suits, inflatable boats and generators are among the kit being donated.
The convoy will make its way to Poland, where the equipment will be handed over to the Polish State Fire Service, with support from Germany on the route.
Organised by UK charity FIRE AID and International Development, the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC), EASST and the wider fire industry, the convoys have also been supported by the Home Office and other government departments.
The first convoy left in March and since then further work has been underway to ensure these monumental ‘mega’ convoys could continue.
The donated equipment covers a wide-range of kit, which is either due to be replaced or fire services have the capacity to donate it. It will all be provided in good, working order and all vehicles will be serviced and checked before the convoy sets off.
These donations, requested by Ukraine, will support its fire and rescue service as they continue their life-saving work in the most difficult conditions imaginable.
As the war continues to devastate Ukraine, fire engines, fire stations and equipment has been lost, with a number of firefighters sadly losing their lives.
The convoy is being supported by the Home Office, Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office, the Fire Industry Association, the FIA Foundation, the Fire Sector Federation and other partners.
National Resilience, which is run by NFCC, coordinated the response with UK fire and rescue services and this national response means teams and equipment can be deployed quickly and effectively. While UKISAR, formed from 18 UK fire and rescue services and is on permanent standby to mobilise and assist when requested by disaster-affected countries, assisted with ensuring all kit and equipment was in full working order and packed correctly.
Vice chair of the National Fire Chiefs Council, Phil Garrigan, commented, “The situation in Ukraine remains incredibly serious and by working with our colleagues across Europe, UK fire and rescue services are making a real difference to fire and rescue service operations Ukraine."
Ian Moore, chief executive, Fire Industry Association: “Once again, this amazing partnership has meant we can send equipment to where it is needed most. Since the start of the year, we have worked incredibly closely to make sure the wider fire sector could offer its expertise to play a key part in making these convoys happen, A truly collaborative humanitarian response from the UK to assist those who need our help the most.”
Emma MacLennan, deputy chair of FIRE AID and EASST director said, “The scale of these convoys has been humbling to be a part of. To see the fourth convoy leave and know that almost 70 fire appliances, packed with fire fighting kit and equipment have been donated over the past few months is humbling. This is an incredible achievement and further strengthens our cooperation with Ukraine who we have a long-standing relationship with, working with Ukrainian people and emergency services for more than a decade. This is more than just assisting fire fighters who desperately need our help; it is working with our friends and colleagues who are facing unthinkable conditions.”
Chair of the Cleveland Fire Authority Cllr Paul Kirton said, “To see another convoy of this size go out is testament to the incredible hard work and determination of everyone who has been involved. It really is a phenomenal effort and to see fire and rescue services such as Cleveland Fire Brigade, FIREAID, the sector and NFCC work together to achieve so much in such a short period of time. It is evidence of everyone’s commitment and dedication”.
Ian Hayton, Cleveland’s Chief Fire Officer said, “I’m enormously proud of staff’s dedication and support, and that we are part of a national effort for the people of Ukraine and their firefighters, and other emergency services who risk their lives to help protect the communities they serve.
The kit and fire engines the Fire Authority has donated have reached their end of life in our replacement programme, but are fully serviceable for others to use, especially in the current climate where any resources to support emergency services in the Ukraine are vital. I am so proud that our staff readily volunteered to take part in this fourth convoy. We continue to stand side-by-side with the people of Ukraine and our Ukrainian communities across Teesside.”
Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridge, Cleveland, Cumbria, Derbyshire, Durham and Darlington, Essex, Herford & Worcester, Hertfordshire, Kent, Norfolk, North Wales, Royal Berkshire, Shropshire, Surrey, Tyne & Wear, Warwickshire, West Midlands and West Yorkshire have all donated to this convoy. Merseyside Fire & Rescue Service have provided drivers and a vehicle to transport equipment.
Source: National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC)