Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service's fire investigation dog CC has sniffed out his own Facebook page.
Our dedicated dog with a nose for danger − one of only 17 fire investigation dogs in the UK − wants to use social networking to spread the word on fire safety.
The five-year-old black Labrador and his handler, Nikki Harvey, have been working as a team in Hertfordshire since July 2007. Nikki explained: "CC and I work to find out the cause of fires but also work in the community fire safety team to reduce the amount of arson in the county.
"We hope people will 'like' CC on Facebook to hear what he's been up to and to get the latest fire prevention tips. I love working with CC, he's a real character who loves his job because work to him is one big game!"
CC and Nikki regularly work across the region, assisting fire investigation officers in neighbouring Bedfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Cambridgeshire, Essex, London, Norfolk and Suffolk.
CC, who wears special fire boots to protect his paws at fire scenes, has been trained to sniff out traces of ignitable liquids such as petrol, paraffin and lighter fluid, which can remain present even after the most severe fire.
Fire investigation officers use CC and Nikki to assist them in determining the cause and origin of fires − whether deliberate or accidental.
Nikki added: "Ongoing training is part of CC's daily routine, as it is vitally important that he remains competent and that we are fully prepared to perform a search in any environment. When we attend a scene of a fire, I carry out a full risk assessment before CC starts work, as his safety is paramount. CC's special boots prevent him from being injured from hazards such as glass and other debris."
Richard Thake, Cabinet Member for Community Safety, said: "With so many people using social networking to connect, we hope launching CC on Facebook will raise people's awareness of fire safety."
Hertfordshire's Chief Fire Officer Roy Wilsher said: "We want to prevent fires and keep people safe and I think CC's followers will learn a lot of useful tips to prevent accidental fires.
"I've recently started using Twitter myself (@HertsFireChief) and think social networking is a great way to spread our messages across Hertfordshire."
CC, who is sponsored by Hatfield-based Computacenter, is Hertfordshire's second fire investigation dog. His predecessor, Browza, was also sponsored by Computacenter.
You'll find CC's Facebook page here:
and Roy Wilsher's Twitter here:
Posted February 17th, 2012 at 1005 by Andrew. Comment by emailing: firstname.lastname@example.org