FIREFIGHTERS in Hatfield are now on standby to attend any major water-related incidents across the UK – and have a new boat for their duties.
Hatfield, the only water incident team in Hertfordshire, is now also part of the National Resilience Programme, which means they could be deployed anywhere in the country to deal with emergencies such as flood rescues.
The new craft is a four-metre ‘RIB’ – rigid inflatable boat – with a 40hp engine.
And it has been christened Seawave, after the fire station asked pupils at Birchwood Avenue Primary School to name it and give water safety advice.
Year 1 pupil Keeley Wade came up with the winning name, while Max Wallace, of Year 6, gave the best tip, which was to never walk on a frozen lake or pond.
Their prize was to head down to Stanborough Lakes to see the name plaque fitted to the boat and go for a short ride in it.
Crew commander Mark Pidduck said: “The new boat which the crew is currently undertaking tidal and coastal training in at Bradwell, Essex, will be sent to all major incidents nationally.
“This is quite a coup for Herts Fire and Rescue Service as there are only a limited number of brigades, about eight, who will be called in for National Resilience.”
Mr Pidduck also thanked the school’s staff and pupils, especially head Joanna Di-Bella, for their efforts in the competition.