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November 3, 2005

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National Safety Symposium- Emergency vid’s the biz!

A video that helps train the emergency services to communicate better at incident scenes was the big winner in this year’s Zurich Municipal Awards.

The awards, presented at the National Safety Symposium evening reception at Keele Hall, recognise projects that make an outstanding contribution to improving health and safety in the public service sector.

‘Managing health and safety at multi-agency incidents’, a video produced by Lincolnshire Fire, Ambulance and Police Services, scooped the Zurich Municipal Safety Trophy, along with a plaque and cheque for £750.

The video was produced in response to an incident that occurred after a road accident in the county. A hydraulic hose splashed oil on to two ambulance personnel, creating a potentially serious safety hazard. David Thorpe, Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Service’s area manager, explained: “The video uses a road traffic accident as an example of a frequent multi-agency incident. It explains the areas of health and safety responsibility and control for each agency’s lead officer.”

The video reveals how the key to maintaining safe working is effective communication between all the agencies, and why all personnel at the scene need an understanding of their health and safety duties, as well as those of colleagues.

Certificates of Merit, along with engraved goblets and cheques for £250, were also presented to Blackpool Council’s health and safety manager, Stephanie Lowdon and her colleague, Mark Midgley, and to Paul Chappell, health and safety advisor for Cardiff County Council.

Stephanie and Mark received their certificates for developing a safety permit-to-work scheme, following a number of accidents on the seaside resort’s seven-mile tramway: “We set up a tramway safety management group, and now, whenever we have an activity that could come into conflict with the tramway, the organisers have to apply for a permit. It’s allowed us to put in control measures that help keep everyone safe.”

Paul produced a model for improved communication of relevant safety information between managed venues and visitor attractions and individual schools: “We carried out research and found schools in our area were getting very little, or inappropriate, information from a number of venues they were using for educational visits.”

He added that many schools and venues had found the model useful, ensuring that children don’t miss out on school trips.

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