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Tri-service safety officers receive new fleet of specifically fitted vehicles

Since becoming operational in February Cornwall’s 10 tri-service safety officers (TSSOs) have become vital to the safety of communities across the county.

A new fleet of dedicated vehicles has now been unveiled which will both help them to do their job more effectively and provide them with a highly visible and recognisable presence in the towns and villages they serve.

The new vehicles have been specifically fitted so TSSOs can respond to urgent medical emergencies but are also equipped to support both police and fire and rescue services in their role.

Cornwall has 10 TSSOs who have been fully operational since February supporting the local communities.

They primarily focus on engagement, early intervention, prevention and reducing demand for police, fire and ambulance services as well as responding to emergencies on behalf of the fire and ambulance service. 

The TSSO role is jointly funded by Devon & Cornwall Police, South Western Ambulance Service (NHS) Foundation Trust and Cornwall Fire, Rescue & Community Safety Service.

TSSOs operate in the community they are based, having instant access to police, fire and ambulance IT systems to enable a rapid understanding of incidents.

The 10 TSSOs across Cornwall are:

  • St Just- Mesha Wardman
  • Hayle - Adrian Hart
  • St Ives - Tarryn Brown
  • Fowey and Polruan - Myghal Larter
  • Perranporth - Phillip Graham
  • St Dennis - Dave Halford
  • Looe - Phil Whittingham
  • Lostwithiel - Jack Wellington
  • Liskeard - Richard Deavall
  • Bude - Adam Chapman

Whilst the role doesn’t have police powers as such, they do have powers under the Community Safety Accreditation Scheme and are able to give community safety and prevention advice such as information on anti-social behaviour.

In addition they can undertake home safety fire checks, (installation of smoke alarms etc), and provide medical support and onward referral.

This has shown clear benefits to the community as well as reduced 999 demand on frontline emergency services.

Police and Crime Commissioner for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, Alison Hernandez, who part-funded development of the TSSO role as a direct result of the £12 increase paid by council tax payers for policing, said: “Independent evaluation has evidenced a clear benefit to all three emergency services and it’s no surprise to me that the communities which now have a TSSO have welcomed them with open arms.

“Through their council tax the public has persistently backed my plans to invest in new ways for our communities to become safer, in return for a promise that if they paid more they would get more in return and the roll-out of TSSOs across Cornwall is part of that.

“TSSOs are proving a vital tool in the police’s armoury when it comes to preventing and deterring crime - I expect to see more of both being deployed in the future.”

Chief Superintendent Jim Pearce, Cornwall commander from Devon and Cornwall Police said:

“The TSSOs are a vital resource for the communities of Cornwall and we are extremely pleased they now have a fleet of vehicles equipped to assist them in their roles.

“Since the TSSOs became fully operational in February, we have seen the positive impact they have had across Cornwall, both in their communities and supporting local neighbourhood teams, the fire and ambulance services.”  

Assistant Chief Fire Officer Mark Hewitt: “The success of the Tri Service Safety Officer continues to grow making a positive difference in the areas which they are serving.

“We are proud of our multi agency partnership approach together with Cornwall Council, Devon & Cornwall Police and South West Ambulance Service Foundation Trust. The new Tri Service vehicles will greatly assist their Protection, Prevention and Response activity within our communities.”

Neil Le Chevalier, executive officer, South Western Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust said: “This role was created by individuals who see that we must do things differently if we are to have a positive impact on the future of our communities and our services. Initiatives designed and supported by communities is a sustainable way to encourage a safer environment.

“We are delighted to continue the support for this programme and we feel these vehicles are another demonstration of how working together delivers results which are beneficial to our community. We hope this will raise awareness to the Officers and the fantastic work they do."