Community and living, Community Safety

Lambeth launches film ‘to shock’ on fire station cuts


Lambeth Council have launched a ‘shocking’ new film on YouTube today (Monday 13th May 2013) which graphically highlights the dangers to Londoners from the Mayor of London’s plan to close Clapham Fire station.

The film, ‘Every Second Counts’ vividly illustrates the increased risk to life as a result of the Mayor of London’s plan to close Clapham Fire station, which will increase the average time it takes for a fire engine to reach a fire in Lambeth. The viewer sees a child’s bedroom slowly filling up with smoke and hears them struggling for breath. A ticking clock in the background and the heavy build-up of smoke in a very short time illustrates the point that every second counts when a fire breaks out, and any increase in response time is potentially fatal.

Lambeth drew inspiration for ‘Every Second Counts’ from powerful and uncompromising government public health films on issues from Smoking to Drink Driving.

You can view ‘Every Second Counts’ here >>

Leader of Lambeth Council, Cllr Lib Peck said, “Some people may find this film shocking, but we make no apologies for drawing attention to the real dangers of closing Clapham fire station to public safety. The devastating impact of fire in the home cannot be overstated. That’s why when it comes to emergency response times, every second counts.”

Cabinet member for Safer and Stronger Communities, Cllr Jack Hopkins said, “According to the London Fire Brigade, the Mayor of London’s plan to close Clapham Fire station will add an extra 34 seconds to average time it takes the first fire engine to reach an emergency in Lambeth. And this rises to an extra four minutes in parts of Clapham. Surely it is time for the Mayor to rethink his plans to close Clapham fire station rather than pressing ahead with these proposals which endanger our residents.”


1. ‘Every Second Counts’ has been released ahead of a public consultation meeting organised by the London Fire Authority about the plans to close Clapham Fire station. The meeting is being held on Thursday 16th May from 7pm at Lambeth Assembly Rooms, Town Hall, Brixton.


2. The full text of the ‘Every Second Counts’ film is:

Every year over 350 people are killed in house fires in Britai

Babies children and older people are most at risk when a fire breaks out

Last year 21 children under age of 16 were killed in fires

Most fires occur when people are sleeping

When fire takes hold every second counts

If you wake up, you may have only seconds to escape.

Just two or three breaths of toxic smoke, you’re unconscious. Your lungs fill up and you can’t breathe.

The Mayor of London wants to close Clapham Fire Station.

This will add 34 seconds to the average response time for firefighters to reach emergencies in Lambeth.

We think this is wrong and will endanger the safety of people who live and work in Lambeth.

When fire breaks out every second counts

Sign our petition to save Clapham Fire Station at http://www.lambeth.gov.uk/SaveClaphamFireStation

On May 8th 2013, London Fire Brigade revealed many people living in Clapham will see average response times rise by 3 minutes 57 seconds if Clapham Fire Station is closed

That’s the biggest increase to the time it will take for the fire brigade to respond to any emergency in London.


3. ‘Every Second Counts’ was produced by AT Productions on behalf of Lambeth Council. The total cost of the film is £600.


4. In 2008, the cost of fire in UK was estimated at £8.3 billion, which includes both deliberate and accidental fire



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