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Herm Fire Team given new bespoke equipment to help protect the island

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Monday 08 April 2024

Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service's team in Herm have been supplied with two new fire trailers to replace the original units that were supplied over twenty years ago. This will ensure the retained firefighters on the island remain properly equipped to tackle a blaze.

The two trailers were designed and built to a bespoke specification by Emergency One - a fire engine manufacturer in the UK - with the equipment Herm would need to fight a fire on the island.

Each trailer is equipped with a self-contained portable pumping unit, that can deliver up to 1,000 litres per minute of water at a pressure of 15 bar, along with all of the associated hoses and nozzles to establish an effective attack on a fire.  In addition, one of the trailers carries a ladder that can extend to seven metres, which enables rescues to be carried out from the buildings on the island.  It also carries 2,000 litres of water so an immediate fire attack can commence while a supply is established from one of a number of water sources on the island.

Guernsey's Fire Service is also responsible for protecting Herm, and employs a small team of staff on a retained basis who also work for Herm Island. They complete regular refresher training with Firefighters in Guernsey, and would be the first responders to an incident on the island, tasked with supressing any fire before fire crews from Guernsey can travel across.

The trailers were handed over at the end of March by members of Guernsey's Operations Team in time for the start of Herm's 2024 tourist season. During the handover, the retained Herm team completed their latest refresher training on all of the new equipment.

Jon Le Page, Chief Fire Officer, said:

"Herm is a part of the Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service's remit, and to ensure we can respond rapidly to any incident that might occur on the island, we employ and train a small group of staff from Herm Island as on-call firefighters. In the case of a fire, this team would be first on the scene, and would be tasked with trying to extinguish the fire or to control it until backup can arrive from Guernsey. Ensuring this team have the proper tools to complete this job is essential, and these new trailers have everything they would need. We are fortunate to have a good working relationship with Herm Island, who allow these staff to train regularly with us."

Craig Senior, CEO of Herm Island, said:

"We are extremely honoured to work alongside the Guernsey Fire and Rescue Service. Our on-island team of firefighters benefit hugely from their exceptional levels of training and experience which is invaluable to the Herm community so that we are fully equipped and able to deal with emergencies should they arise. We have always found GFRS to be very supportive over the many years we have worked together, and we thank them most sincerely for their continuing investment, first class training and ongoing support of the Herm team."

Emergency One's Design Director, Lee Dawson, said:

"At Emergency One, we believe in the power of purpose-driven design to transform firefighting capabilities. Crafting bespoke solutions for Guernsey Fire & Rescue Service and Herm Island was an inspiring challenge, where every detail was meticulously considered to optimise functionality, efficiency, and safety. As a fire engine manufacturer, designing a bespoke solution for Herm Island posed unique challenges, particularly in accommodating the required off-road capabilities. Our design had to strike a balance between robustness and suitability for Herm's island terrain, ensuring that the trailers could navigate the rugged landscape while still delivering essential firefighting capabilities was paramount. It's a testament to our dedication to innovation and adaptability that we were able to meet these challenges head-on and deliver equipment that will serve the Herm community effectively."

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