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Last night we heard:

‘On November 5th last year there were 13 attacks on fire crews across Scotland.’

We heard nothing at all to put this in context. Any viewer, wide awake, might be wondering is that an increasing phenomenon? Do we need more fire fighters to cope? Are things worse or better here than in some neighbouring country?

From Police Scotland, on last year’s incidents:

Sunday 4th November 2018 saw 56 reported ASB incidents and 19 fireworks offences, compared to 157 and 146 respectively for Sunday 5th November 2017. This equates to a 64% reduction for antisocial behaviour and an almost 87% reduction for crimes involving fireworks.


Comparing Scotland with England:

Scotland has 6 409 firefighters while England has 35 620. So, England has 10 times the population but only 5.5 times the number of firefighters. Before the Tory cuts, the ratio would have been 7 times as opposed to 10 times.

Click to access sfrs_fso_stats_2017_18.pdf


Might a journalist be interested in context at all?