The claimant was a retained firefighter. He tripped on the strap of a “lantern” (an unlighted torch) as he got out of his vehicle.

Our argument was that there was inadequate housekeeping – there was no system for cleaning and maintaining the vehicles after each call-out and stowing the lanterns securely away. Instead they had been thrown in a bag with straps hanging out.

The judge accepted that the housekeeping of the fire brigade was sloppy and allowed this accident to happen. He stated that the housekeeping would not have happened with a full-time fire fighter as opposed to retained fire fighters. Stowing lamps/lights within the fire engine by simply placing them in a holdall section in the back of the passenger seat was sloppy and negligent.

Nottingham CC, 19 October 2009