Hit, spat on, insulted - fire brigade demands harsh penalties for attacks on emergency services
Created: 12/28/2022 10:43 am
By: Ines Baur
A fire engine from the fire brigade drives to an operation with blue lights flashing (symbol image).
© Lino Mirgeler/dpa/symbol image
They are insulted, insulted or attacked during operations.
Firefighters, police officers and paramedics are fed up.
The fire brigade association wants to see convictions as a response to aggression.
Berlin – In Hesse, vehicles of the volunteer fire brigade are thrown at with eggs on the way to the deployment site.
Vehicle owners do not form a rescue lane on the A9.
Emergency services and paramedics make their way to the scene of the accident on foot and are insulted by the drivers.
Firefighters, police and paramedics are familiar with such and similar scenarios.
The German Fire Brigade Association is now calling for a tough crackdown on attacks on emergency services.
"The state must ensure that fire brigades, but also rescue services and police, as representatives of the state, are not attacked without severe penalties," says Karl-Heinz Banse, President of the German Fire Brigade Association, to the German Press Agency in Berlin.
"The laws allow it."
The fire brigade demands that penalties are also enforced
Everything is already settled.
"We don't need harsher penalties.
I just want those penalties to be enforced.
I want judgments to be made," Banse said.
It cannot be that his people are endangered or almost run over.
And that would ultimately be presented as a petty crime.
Sebastian Späthe, spokesman for the Johanniter Unfallhilfe in Leipzig, reports that his colleagues from the rescue services are seeing increasing aggression during the operations.
It is often a matter of verbal hostilities.
Threatening the fire brigade and emergency services - "That doesn't work at all."
In Baden-Württemberg, firefighters and rescue services were more often exposed to violence than in the previous year.
The number of crimes against them rose by five to 187. Interior Minister Thomas Strobl (CDU) appealed to the people in the country to “stand in front of our emergency and rescue services like a protective wall”.
Police officers, firefighters and emergency services deserved respect and recognition.
"Anyone who threatens or even injures emergency services damages the social climate and cohesion, he crosses a red line," Strobl told the
German Press Agency
"That is not how it works."
The police in Hamburg reports more violence against officials in the first three quarters of the current year.
A total of 1958 cases are recorded.
That's 184 more than in the same period last year, the police told the
German Press Agency
Among them were 899 physical attacks on law enforcement officers.
In Bavaria alone, the Bavarian Red Cross (BRK) and the Johanniter report a noticeable decline.
Official figures for 2022 are not yet available.
But the internal statistics list fewer cases than in the two previous years, according to BRK spokesman Sohrab Taheri-Sohi.
According to statistics from the Ministry of the Interior, the number of cases actually recorded in which rescuers become victims of a crime has been relatively constant for years.
An overview by the Ministry of the Interior shows that from 2015 to 2021 more than 100 members of the fire and rescue services were victims of a crime.
Fire brigade and emergency services - Who is ready to join in when they are spat on?
The fire brigade association complains about the increasing disrespect: "Respect for those who help others should be increased again." This is not least important for motivating volunteers.
"Who is willing to take part anywhere if they can expect to be spat on at the scene," said President Banse.
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According to him, emergency services would be hindered in their work by onlookers.
“We know that sometimes we have fewer emergency workers.
But today, with almost every operation, you have to deploy additional workers to prevent onlookers from getting too close to the scene of the operation.” According to him, two to three rescuers are needed to stretch tarpaulins as privacy screens in the event of accidents on federal roads or motorways.
“This is to prevent onlookers from taking pictures.
That's a problem." (ib/dpa)