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Why Is Safety In Action So Important?

Some children in Jersey don’t know what number to ring in an emergency.

The Child Accident Prevention Jersey Group (CAP), are still finding that some children are confused about which number to ring in an emergency and could dial a number for directory enquiries instead.

The confusion became apparent during Safety in Action Week which aims to give children the tools to assess risks and make informed choices for themselves. When we asked them what number to ring in an emergency, several children in each group said 911 or 118.

During the annual Safety in Action Event when over 1000 nine and ten year olds attend, concerns were raised by how frequently these numbers were being mentioned. With the increasing number of American-made children’s programmes and high-profile ad campaigns, it’s easy to see why when children are under pressure, they can get confused.

The ambulance, police and fire services have been working together to ensure Islanders are given a consistent message about which number to ring in an emergency.

In response, the Jersey Fire and Rescue Service have said, “Each country has a different number to contact the emergency services and to avoid confusion, the European Union introduced 112 in the early 1990s. Jersey adopted 112 alongside the UK’s 999 because of the Island’s proximity to France and the European Union’s campaign to adopt a single emergency number across all 27 EU countries.

“At this time the UK have no plans to drop the 999 number, and Jersey’s emergency services have taken the position to make 999 the sole number in all our advertising and student education programmes to combat confusion. It’s so important that children are able to call for help when they find themselves in a dangerous situation where every second counts. Although we value the importance of 112 working in Jersey, especially due the high number of visiting people from Europe, we want 999 to be the first number to pop into children’s heads.”

Safety in Action 2016 runs from Monday 4th to Tuesday 10th July . Every student visits  a series of workshops designed to show them different potentially hazardous situations such as Fire; Beach and Water; Home and kitchen ; Road Traffic; Play; First Aid. This is the 19th year the event has been offered to all primary school year 5 children in Jersey.

With grateful thanks to our sponsors;  The Channel Islands Co-operative Society,  Marks and Spencer and Vend!

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