Chimney fire

October 3rd, 2018 by

Chimney Fire

A crew of six firefighters from Lostwithiel Community Fire Station were mobilised to a chimney fire on the evening of Monday 2 October within the town. After investigating they found the remains of a birds nest halfway up the chimney breast. Please can we ask you to endure your chimney is cleaned after the summer months ahead of the winter.

Thankfully this incident was contained but so often these types of incidents can escalate.

The following link contains safety advice: https://bit.ly/2fDP8rc

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Cornwall Faith Response Team Re-launch

October 3rd, 2018 by

Cornwall Council has had a Faith Response Team (CFRT) for several years but has now been re-launched, equipped, trained & prepared to respond effectively as required anywhere in Cornwall. People involved with or affected by an emergency may require pastoral, spiritual & practical support, especially where they are suffering through pain, sorrow, trauma, severe injury, loss of property or possessions or where people are missing.

Our Resilience & Emergency Management team recognises that such support can be provided by suitably trained volunteers, and now the team has been re-launched, equipped, trained and prepared to respond effectively as required anywhere in Cornwall.

The team will be mobilised if the Resilience & Emergency Management team become aware of an incident where such support is or may be required. The Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust Spiritual & Pastoral Care Team will contact the necessary CFRT members & request their attendance at the incident location as required.

The training being provided to team members includes information about what to expect at such incident scenes, recognition of personal confidence, capabilities and limitations, understanding the various types of incident scenes, shelters and reception centres where they may need to interact with affected people and how they may support them.

Members of the CFRT are drawn from a wide range of faiths & beliefs including Christian, Judaism, Pagan and others. It is important to recognise the ecumenical strength of the team but they will provide support to anyone needing it.

Cornwall Council’s Senior Resilience Officer, Martin Rawling said: “I am humbled by the willingness of our volunteers to step into the unknown and support their fellow beings in such circumstances of terror, loss and suffering. We are grateful to our volunteers for committing to this task and I sincerely hope that we never have to call on their support; but I am absolutely confident that they will respond appropriately when asked.
“Bringing the team together, working on the procedures for the group and co-ordinating the team and their training has fallen to a handful of the volunteers themselves who have stepped forward to become the management group. The residents and visitors to Cornwall are right to be proud of this commitment and the work they have undertaken on our behalf.”

The re-launch took place on 17 September

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ACT NOW for schools

September 28th, 2018 by

Penrice Academy have signed up to another input covering Counter Terrorism!

Using the Act Now programme, Cornwall’s Youth Intervention Officers are giving the students an opportunity to take on the roles of senior Counter Terrorism officers dealing with a series of events in the fictitious Sanford City.

ACT NOW for schools is designed to stimulate debate around the very sensitive subject of extremism and terrorism and is aimed at young people at Key Stage 4.

The students experience what its like to operate at a senior level, receiving briefings around intelligence of a potential Terrorist attack. Having limited time to discuss action plans, they then have to present their findings throughout and run a press release.

The whole lesson then results in a Police operation capturing the suspects and the process of court proceeding thereafter. All in a 75 min lesson!!

The students realise there is always something missing in the lesson, information! Useful intelligence that in real life, helps prevent terrorist attacks from being carried through.

If every young person in the UK had this input, they would be more likely to report suspicious activity in their lifetime thus, helping to preventing further attacks in our country!

 

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National Burn Awareness Day

September 27th, 2018 by

National Burn Awareness Day 2018

17 October.

A burn injury is for life. The scars are physical as well as psychological, and can present life-long challenges for the individual and their families.  What many people don’t know is that children and the elderly are the most vulnerable, and the majority of injuries occur as a result of an accident that could so easily have been prevented.

In 2017, 7,502 children were burned or scalded. Hot drinks are the most common cause of scald injury in children – followed by contact with electric cookers, irons and hair straighteners.

First Aid

Treat burns with cold running water for 20 minutesGood first aid following a burn or scald can make an enormous difference in recovery times and the severity of scarring.

Two important things to remember are:

Cool, Call, Cover

  1. Cool the burn with running cold tap water for 20 minutes and remove all clothing and jewellery (unless it is melted or firmly stuck to the wound)
  2. Call for help – 999, 111 or local GP for advice
  3. Cover with cling film or a sterile, non-fluffy dressing or cloth. Make sure the patient is kept warm

Stop, Drop, roll

“Stop, drop and roll” is used when clothing catches fire. Children can get confused about when to stop, drop and roll. It is important to know when to do this. Children who do not have a good understanding of stop, drop and roll will sometimes do this if they burn a finger or need to get outside if the smoke alarm sounds. Only use stop, drop and roll when clothing catches fire.

Find out more how to prevent burns HERE

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Child Sexual Exploitation Campaign

September 25th, 2018 by

Our Safeguarding Children Partnership and Safer Cornwall is coordinating and supporting an education campaign aimed at the hospitality industry as part of a wider Devon and Cornwall Police campaign called ‘I didn’t know’ from 26th to 28th September 2018.

It follows on from the National Child Sexual Exploitation Day in March 2018 and highlights how the hospitality industry may spot signs and report and gain support.

Child exploitation is a form of abuse that involves the manipulation or coercion of young people into sexual or criminal activity, and there have been many harrowing stories where children have been targeted and groomed.

The ‘I didn’t know’ message aims to highlight child sexual exploitation and encourage everyone to adopt a zero tolerance to the exploitation of children.

Hotels and B&Bs are in a unique position to help – evidence shows that accommodation is often used as a location to meet, groom and abuse children (both girls and boys).

Exploited children are almost always too terrified to ask for help themselves.  Receptionists, managers and housekeepers are in a unique position to notice when someone or something seems suspicious or may not all be ok with young guests.  By passing their concerns on to the police, they could potentially save a child from exploitation/further exploitation.

A leaflet will be provided within walkabouts across 5 of the Safer Towns in Cornwall by local police neighbourhood policing teams and partners, and will be followed up by a larger campaign before peak season next year to provide advice and support to the industry.  Not all accommodation providers will be visited on this occasion but providers and the general public can gain more information by going to:

  1. ‘I didn’t know’ campaign dc.police.uk/CSE

2.  Hotel watch – www.dc.police.uk/hotelwatch

 

 

 

 

#knowthesigns

#saysomething

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Mental health service maps

September 21st, 2018 by

“Research by Safer Cornwall in 2016 showed a need for a clear guide about referring individuals to mental health services.  These maps were developed in order to assist Safer Cornwall services when making referrals or signposting individuals to mental health services in Cornwall.

These maps show:

  • Primary and secondary mental healthcare services including which conditions they treat and how to contact them
  • Details of other community mental health services including services for veterans
  • Details of specialist community safety services for drug and alcohol misuse and domestic abuse and sexual violence
  • A mini guide of what a good quality referral to mental health services should include.

The maps have been tested by service representatives and are now available to be shared within and across services in Cornwall.  These maps will be updated periodically as service delivery changes but please contact us if you notice any content which needs changing.”

To view the Service Maps click below

Library – Strategies and Evidence
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100 days, 100 ways

August 23rd, 2018 by

100 days, 100 ways asks people to support First Light by raising £100 between 25 August and 2 December (100 days).  Inspired by 2018 being the 100-year anniversary of women getting the vote in Britain, the campaign concludes with Domestic Abuse Awareness Week (25 November – 2 December) and aims to encourage as many people as possible to think of fun, original ways to fundraise or challenge themselves to achieve a personal goal.

We’re asking donors to sign-up through the following weblink (http://www.100days100ways.org/) where they can request a fundraising pack

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Heatwave brings out scam gardeners

August 16th, 2018 by

Cornwall’s hot sunny weather this summer has sparked an increase in doorstep scams involving garden or outside maintenance.

Now Cornwall Council Trading Standards are urging residents to be vigilant after a surge in reported incidents over the past two weeks, especially at park home sites.

Different scams have featured gardening and tree surgery work targeted for unnecessary and over-priced repairs.

In one recent case, the cold caller started work clearing grass clippings before getting any agreement from the home owner to do it. When refused payment for the work they started to rummage around in a workshop, attempting to take tools and other items as payment.

In another case, cold callers have undertaken work to replace support jacks underneath park home properties, preying on resident’s fears about the condition of supports underneath their homes. Although some work was carried out, it appears to have been massively over-priced and unnecessary.

In the past couple of weeks there have been nine separate reported complaints from residents in Redruth, Bodmin, Helston, St Austell, and St Columb.

Cornwall Council’s Trading Standards team works in partnership with Devon & Cornwall Police to investigate these issues, and where possible, bring offenders before the courts.

In order to help communities avoid the rogues, the team operates the ‘Trading Standards approved’ Buy With Confidence Scheme; offering a directory of tradespeople who have been vetted by our Service to ensure that they are reputable and trustworthy businesses

Sue James, Cabinet Portfolio holder for public protection said: “Doorstep scams take place when someone comes to your door with the aim of scamming you out of your money or trying to gain access to your property.

“Scams can happen at any time of the year, but we have noticed an increase in scams relating to home and garden maintenance, possibly linked to the beautiful weather we are experiencing and people wanting to spend time outdoors.

“While the majority of tradespeople and officials are legitimate it’s wise to be on your guard when you answer your door. Doorstep scammers can be persuasive or pushy but also polite or friendly, and it can be easy to fall victim. It’s especially important to be vigilant and aware if you live on your own.

“Many of the recent reports we’ve received have been opportunistic – they’ve seen someone out working in the garden and have been pushy in getting them agree to pay for services.

“The criminals generally focus on the elderly and vulnerable, and are very good at spotting their targets. We all need to be vigilant, and look out for our friends and neighbours. Just because someone presents a business card with some local telephone numbers on it, does not mean it’s a genuine business.”

Residents are asked to report concerns to Trading Standards via the Citizens Advice Consumer Service on 03454 04 05 06; alternatively, If you see a suspected rogue trader actively working on a property in your area, please report to the police on 101.

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Police warning over substance abuse – Two girls hospitalised

August 1st, 2018 by

Police warning over substance abuse

Detectives in Bodmin are currently investigating an incident which left two teenagers needing medical assistance following suspected substance abuse in Bodmin.

Officers were notified at about 11:00pm Sunday 29 July to reports of two teenage girls who had taken an unknown substance and became very unwell as a result.

The girls, a 16-year-old and a 17-year-old, were both taken to Treliske Hospital where their condition was stabilised. The 16-year-old girl was later released from hospital, the 17-year-old girl is currently recovering in hospital.

DC Andy Petherick said: “The substance that these girls are believed to have taken came in the form of yellow tablets which were in the shape of a shield with ‘EA7’ written on them, similar to the one pictured.

“We are urging young people to stay away from substances. You do not know what is in them or how strong the drug may be or how your body will react to them.”

Anybody with information about this incident are asked to contact police via 101@dc.police.uk or by calling 101 and quote log number 989 29/07/2018

 

 

 

https://www.devon-cornwall.police.uk/News/NewsArticle.aspx?id=e5f87eac-1c6f-49ca-ba0f-f71f9de860f8

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Alprazolam (Xanax) – What are the Facts?

July 30th, 2018 by

Public Health England briefing

Over the past year, there has been increasing media coverage about alprazolam (typically referred to by the brand name Xanax), highlighting what is being seen as a rise in the number of young people using it. Most of the media reports have described individual cases or reports from treatment services, and there has been little discussion of the research evidence or the actual data.

As with all media coverage which highlights potential changes in drug trends, there is a risk that the evidence isn’t clearly presented or even available, and that raising the profile of a particular drug can inadvertently increase interest from some drug users.

What is alprazolam?

Alprazolam is a medicine in the benzodiazepine family of drugs. Benzodiazepines are most commonly prescribed for the treatment of anxiety and insomnia, and they are also prescribed to control seizures caused by epilepsy.

The most frequently prescribed benzodiazepine in the UK is diazepam, known by the tradename Valium. In comparison, alprazolam is a faster acting drug and is about 10 times stronger, meaning that it can rapidly cause feelings of sedation.

Like other benzodiazepines, alprazolam can cause problems when taken without medical supervision. In the short term, its misuse can cause over-sedation, collapsing and overdose. Longer-term use can lead to physical dependence and severe withdrawal upon reducing or stopping use.

Furthermore, taking any benzodiazepine with alcohol and/or other drugs increases the risk of harm. This is particularly the case when benzodiazepines are mixed with other sedative drugs.

Alprazolam is not available from the NHS, but can be obtained on a private prescription in the UK. Illicit alprazolam, normally in the form of counterfeit Xanax tablets, can be bought from street level drug markets and is also available to purchase from illegal websites and social media apps.

What is being said about alprazolam (Xanax)?

There have been a growing number of personal stories reported in the media, often about young people who have developed problems with alprazolam (Xanax), as well as anecdotal reports that they are self-medicating for anxiety issues.

There have also been discussions around alprazolam in political circles. In January this year, the MP Bambos Charalambous led the first debate in the House of Commons to discuss its misuse.

Sometimes, the use of alprazolam (Xanax) is portrayed in the media as a major epidemic among young people. There is currently no evidence of this, but, as we explain further down, there is some evidence that prevalence is increasing. It is important to understand that patterns of drug use change over time. Some drugs rapidly emerge but then their use quickly declines, other drugs persist and cause significant and sustained harm. It is currently too early to know which category alprazolam will fall into.

What do we know about alprazolam use?

As the media coverage of alprazolam continues, PHE has been asked to comment, particularly on trends. There is some evidence to suggest that use is a growing problem, particularly among young people and young adults. However, the data we have does not give a clear picture of the prevalence of alprazolam use, as some of these data cover all benzodiazepines and not alprazolam specifically, making it more difficult to detect changes in use.

Preliminary hospital admission data in England for 2017 indicates that there has been an increase in the number of people aged under 20 admitted to hospital with benzodiazepine poisoning. Over the same period, enquiries to the National Poisons Information Service about the treatment of alprazolam poisoning have increased substantially. PHE has examined UK police seizures data for drugs that were submitted for forensic analysis, which showed that the number of alprazolam seizures was far greater in 2017 than in previous years, increasing from fewer than ten seizures in 2016 to over 800 in 2017.

Many of the Xanax tablets available on illicit markets are not of pharmaceutical grade, but are in fact counterfeit. This is a major concern because these counterfeit products may contain very variable amounts of alprazolam, making it hard for drug users to decide how much to take. Counterfeit Xanax has also been shown to sometimes contain other drugs and/or potentially dangerous adulterants.

Information we have received from TICTAC, a drug analysis laboratory, has confirmed that samples produced to look like real Xanax tablets actually contained other drugs such as etizolam, which is another benzodiazepine linked to a large number of deaths in Scotland. TICTAC also found that ‘fake’ tablets that did contain alprazolam varied greatly in strength, with some tablets having more than 10 times the normal dose of an authentic Xanax tablet.

The unpredictability of dose can be very dangerous to drug users who will not be able to judge how much alprazolam (or other substituted drugs) the tablets contains until after they have consumed it and are experiencing harmful effects.

What is being done and what should be done?

What PHE is doing

At PHE, we’ve been looking at all national data and other intelligence to try to get a better understanding of alprazolam use in England. We are also talking to experts and others to build a clearer picture.

Our locally based PHE Centre teams are working closely with local authorities, providing them with data, guidance and other bespoke support to help them assess local treatment need, and commission services to meet that need. This may include specific support for those misusing alprazolam depending on the size of the problem in their area.

We are piloting Report Illicit Drug Reactions (RIDR), an online reporting system for harm caused by illicit drugs, particularly new psychoactive substances (NPS). This system also captures the harms caused by misused medications, such as alprazolam.

When new drugs or patterns of use emerge, the particular health consequences associated with them may not always be fully understood at first. For example, the bladder problems caused by ketamine were not originally recognised until different treatment services began to join the dots and find the link between the two. RIDR seeks to speed up the identification of harms, so that health and treatment services can rapidly deliver the most appropriate interventions. PHE encourages frontline staff to use RIDR to report clinical harms they are seeing in their local areas. This helps build a better understanding of the emerging problems and their geographical distribution.

PHE holds a quarterly clinical network meeting with experts on new drugs and emerging drug trends, which provides the opportunity to discuss data from RIDR, the latest NPS-related research, and other sources. After each meeting, we update the RIDR dashboard to log current issues and concerns. Alprazolam has featured on the dashboard since September 2017.

What are we doing in Cornwall & Isles of Scilly?

Our treatment services have responded to this emerging pattern of use by learning more, training their staff, producing information for young people, raising awareness of the problem locally, and offering advice, support and treatment to young people having problems.

Drug Watch, an information network, put together a briefing on alprazolam for professionals and the public (see below) which we are disseminating.

We seek to ensure that staff working in services in contact with vulnerable groups are well-informed; and support the development of appropriate responses.

It is especially important that any local communications to professionals and young people are proportionate so that they raise awareness and knowledge without driving up interest and drug-seeking.

Download PDF FileAlprazolam Infosheet DrugWatch

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Safer Cornwall are a working partnership involving: