Firefighters’ helmets from a West Cumbrian brigade are being shipped across Europe to be used in Macedonia as part of the work of Operation Florian in supporting fire services in developing countries.
The equipment from Sellafield’s fire and rescue team includes six redundant helmets, worth £1,500, and the brigade's emergency management planning officer has spoken about why they got involved in the Operation Florian scheme.
"We no longer had a use for the helmets as our kit has been upgraded but we didn’t want them to go to waste," said Geoff Lee. “The countries we help are not as fortunate as us and do not have the standard of equipment that we do, they are using very basic kit to fight potentially very dangerous fires.
“Safety is of utmost importance at Sellafield Ltd so anything we can do to help fellow firefighters stay safe and potentially save lives is fantastic.”
Operation Florian is currently working in Macedonia, Zimbabwe, Chile, Portugal, Bulgaria & South Africa and are regularly looking for opportunities to support other fire & rescue services in Asia, Africa and Eastern Europe.
At the handover, Steve Darby, Operation Florian co-director and volunteer, said: “The support from Sellafield Ltd is really appreciated at Operation Florian; the company has supported us for a number of years, continually sending us redundant fire fighting equipment that is vital for third-world countries.
“Sometimes we have to buy equipment but to do that we have to fundraise, so obviously each donation that comes in allows us to save that time.”
For more information visit www.operationflorian.com