Hard terrain, roasting temperatures and sleep deprivation are just some of the challenges firefighters from Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service have faced as they continue to battle the moorland fires that have raged since last week.
Crews, largely made up of on-call firefighters, who have a day job alongside their firefighting duties, including Bingham, Eastwood, Warsop, Harworth, Blidworth and many others, have been working hard to bring the fire under control. They have been supported by a team of Station Managers from across the service to maintain their welfare and provide support whilst working out of county.
A team have also travelled from Mansfield to support the Enhanced Logistical Support Unit (ELS) at Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service’s Service Development Centre, managing the national resources coming in and out of the county to support the incident.
Jonathan Holford, Station Manager in Fire Protection, who has been working on the scene as part of Greater Manchester’s incident command team and as a welfare officer since the weekend, said: “The key objective for us is to ensure that the fire does not spread further into unburnt areas of the moor, protecting the public and people’s property.
“We have also been working with nearby farms and residents ensuring that they have sufficient fire safety measures in place such as fire stops and fire breaks.
“It’s been a real challenge for the crews – they’ve been waking up at 3am each day. I think they’ve had about nine hours sleep in the last three days.”
“I would also like to thank all the employers who have allowed their staff who are also on-call firefighters, in releasing them to attend this incident. Their support has been integral in the response to this major incident.”
He says that the camaraderie and teamwork shown by all the firefighters working at the site has been outstanding with firefighters from Cumbria, Tyne and Wear, Northamptonshire and many others joining with Lancashire and Greater Manchester to bring the incident under control.
The incident looks set to be ongoing for several weeks with the situation monitored daily.