Fire crews called out 29 times to ‘remove objects from people’ last year
Firefighters in Suffolk were called out almost 30 times in the last year to remove objects from people - including one man who had to have a sex aid removed from his genitals.
New figures published by the Home office reveal the number of times Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service has been called to non-fire incidents between April 2017 and March 2018.
These include 81 times crews were called to rescue animals, 55 times to tackle flooding and 26 false alarms reported in good faith. They were also called out 29 times to remove items from people, usually wedding rings.
One such story hit the headlines in January after firefighters spent six hours trying to remove a sex toy from a man’s privates.
Firefighters had been called to accident and emergency department of Ipswich Hospital at 12.35am on December 30.
Four hours later, a backup fire crew were called to assist before the ‘ring’ was finally removed at around 6.40am.
Animal rescues were the main non-fire call out, which an RSPCA spokesman said protected the public from putting themselves in harm’s way.
“The RSPCA can request the help of the fire and rescue service but it is entirely up to them whether or not to attend. Some crews use animal rescues for training but emergencies involving people will always take priority. In some cases crews attend to minimise the risk of members of the public attempting to carry out rescues themselves and potentially putting themselves in danger.”
A spokesman for Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service said they attend various incidents that are not fire-related.
She said: “These can include animal rescues, flooding incidents, even removing objects from people.
“Some of these occasions can be classed as non-emergencies and are relatively low in number.
“They are not considered a burden and crews will attend at normal road speed.
“However, should an emergency call be received, these will always be prioritised, such as when time is of the essence or there is threat to life, property or the environment. To remove objects from people, such as a wedding ring stuck on a finger, we would usually ask the person to visit one of our manned fire stations, or we will be called to an accident and emergency unit.”