City fire engine attacked during emergency call

August 17, 2015

A recent attack on a fire engine in Newry which was responding to an emergency call has been condemned by angry members of the public who took to social media last week to vent their frustration at the senseless attack.

According to a witness, the fire engine was stoned and bottled by a number of youths in the Violet Hill Avenue area of the city after being deployed to an emergency call there. Such was the ferocity of the onslaught that the windscreen of the fire engine was shattered and the vehicle had to be withdrawn from the emergency call as a result.

The attack was blasted on social media the following day after details of the incident were revealed by an angry relative of one of the fire crew members.  Describing the perpetrators as “ignorant scum”, the woman added, “What these people fail to realise is these men are fathers, brothers, husbands and sons doing a job.”  She questioned who the attackers would turn to in case of an emergency and fumed, “The very men they think it’s fun to attack on duty!”

The angry relative urged parents to raise their children to “show respect and be a functioning member of society.”

Her comments received unmitigated support as more and more local residents took to the social forum to express their disgust at the attack, with many placing the blame squarely with the parents of the youths involved in such a dangerous practice.

Speaking to The Examiner about the disturbing incident, A Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service spokesperson said;

“Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service (NIFRS) received a call at 9:38pm to a report of a fire at the Violet Hill Avenue area on Saturday 8th August.

“One Fire Appliance from Newry Fire Station was deployed to the scene. Upon arrival, the appliance was attacked and the windscreen of the vehicle was damaged. The appliance had to be taken off the emergency run as a result of the incident. The small fire burnt out during the incident.

“Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service would appeal to those involved not to threaten or attack Fire Crews responding to call out in their local areas. Firefighters are people from the local community, who work hard to rescue and save lives and property and who job is dangerous enough without the possibility of being attacked.

“Attacks on Firefighters are not only socially unacceptable but also to the detriment of the community. NIFRS works closely with local community and residents groups as well as partner agencies to try and reduce the number of attacks on our personnel.

“Northern Ireland Fire & Rescue Service will continue to protect communities across Northern Ireland.”