Firefighters are striking on Wednesday 25 September between 12pm-4pm over proposed changes to their pensions. The Fire Brigade Union is worried that a retirement age of 60 could mean mass sackings of age 50+ firefighters; the government is adamant that won’t happen (PDF).
Londoners may be interested to know that the city is currently 27 engines down, and has been since the middle of August, because the Fire Brigade took them out of service to provide cover during the strike – before the results of the ballot had even been announced. They’ve been taken from stations that have two engines; find out if one is your local station on the London Fire Brigade website.
In response to the strike, London Fire Brigade has launched a new social media campaign to make sure we’re all safe during what may well be the safest four hours of the day (many of us are at work, we’re not going to sleep or attempting to cook while pissed). The LFB’s public engagement has been much lauded, and is one of the reasons credited for fires being so much reduced that we apparently don’t need as many fire stations.
This one, though, doesn’t seem to be setting Twitter or Facebook alight (sorry). You’re asked to post a #safetyselfie, a photo of yourself taking action to prevent fires. We don’t know what that even means, though so far it seems to be people posing with fire notices – and one firefighter hijacking the hashtag:
Ouch. Although since it’s got us writing about it, albeit in a snarky way, it may be social media genius. Maybe the LFB Commissioner could snap himself in whatever location is being used to store the 27 engines?
Photo by kenjonbro from the Londonist Flickr pool