Firefighters’ warning over poor parking – ‘someone could die’

25 September, 2017 - 16:03
An Essex fire engine struggling to get to an incident due to inconsiderate parking. Picture: ECFRS

An Essex fire engine struggling to get to an incident due to inconsiderate parking. Picture: ECFRS

Archant

Firefighters have issued a stark warning to Essex drivers not to block roads with inconsiderate parking – before someone dies.

Examples of bad parking outside Saffron Walden Fire Station. Picture: ECFRSExamples of bad parking outside Saffron Walden Fire Station. Picture: ECFRS

The alert comes after the latest in a series of incidents where fire engines have been delayed reaching incidents due to blocked roads.

A Halstead fire crew were called out at 9.11pm yesterday to a flooding incident in Cutting Drive in the town, but delayed twice due to poor parking in Mount Pleasant.

The engine had to detour via Trinity Road, which the crew said at points was also nearly blocked with not enough room for a fire engine to pass, and encountered difficulties again at the junction of Mount Pleasant by another poorly parked vehicle.

The station took to Facebook to issue a plea to residents, asking “Please help us help you”.

A car parked on the double yellow lines outside Saffron Walden Fire Station. Picture: Essex County Fire and RescueA car parked on the double yellow lines outside Saffron Walden Fire Station. Picture: Essex County Fire and Rescue

“Luckily on this occasion no-one was injured due to our delay in arrival,” the post said.

“Please think about our access when parking your vehicle before someone dies.”

It is not the first time the brigade has issued such a warning.

There have been several such incidents in the past, including a spate of problems highlighted at Saffron Walden Fire Station in June with vehicles parking on yellow zig-zag lines outside the fire station itself.

An Essex County Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said: “We don’t believe that anyone wants to delay us when we are called to an incident, but people often don’t consider how their parking affects our response.

“They might only plan to be parked somewhere for a few minutes, but that few minutes could make all the difference.

“While on their way to this incident, our firefighters found they could not take the most direct route because of an inconsiderately parked car – forcing them to detour and take a longer, less efficient path.

“The extra time taken for the fire engine to arrive could have made all the difference.

We ask residents to please be considerate about how and where you park and whether you could potentially be putting others’ lives at risk.”

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