The following is a quick guide to what is and isn’t the responsibility of the Fire and Rescue Service when storm damage occurs:
|Problem||Who to call|
|Fallen tree on road, not endangering life||Local authority|
|Fallen tree on road or vehicle, endangering life||Fire and Rescue Service – call 999|
|Fallen tree on property, not endangering life||Personal responsibility|
|Fallen tree on property, endangering life||Fire and Rescue Service – call 999|
|Unsafe structure overhanging a public highway or public footpath||Fire and Rescue Service – call 999|
|Unsafe structure overhanging property, not endangering life||Personal responsibility|
|Unsafe structure overhanging property, endangering life||Fire and Rescue Service – call 999|
|General flooding||Wait for water to subside. See also further advice.|
|Flooding with life risk||Fire and Rescue Service – call 999|
|Flooding affecting electrics||Only if safe to do so, isolate electrics – if in any doubt, contact the Fire and Rescue Service on 999|
|Power cut||Call 105|
|IF IN DOUBT – CALL 999|
Local authority information is as follows:
- BCP Council – call 01202 451629 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm) or 01202 451145 (evenings and weekends)
- Dorset Council – call 01305 221020
- Swindon Borough Council – call 01793 445500 or report online.
- Wiltshire Council – call 0300 456 0105 or report online.
In stormy weather, the risk of a power cut is higher than usual, and this can bring other dangers.
- Make sure you know where your torches are, and that they have working batteries – think about getting wind-up torches, as they’re safe, cheap and never run out of power.
- Charge phones, tablets, power banks and any other essential devices, and make sure you’ve got all the numbers you might need.
- Don’t use candles unless you have no choice – if you do light candles, make sure they are extinguished when you leave the room or go to bed. More advice is here.
- If the power goes off, turn off electrical equipment, except a light or a radio, so you know when power is restored. Switch off electric cooker hobs.
- If you suspect that there is a gas leak, turn off all appliances and the main cylinder valve, open all doors and windows, and don’t smoke or turn on any electrical switches or appliances until you have been given the all-clear. The power cut could end at any time.
- Never use a camping stove, portable barbecue, lit charcoal or generator in an enclosed space, as they are designed for outdoor use only. These devices require adequate ventilation and can produce poisonous carbon monoxide.