A FIRE Brigade was attacked in Waterford last night less than 24 hours after a warning was issued against anti-social behaviour over the Halloween period.
The Irish Fire and Emergency Services Association issued the warning ahead of Halloween due to the increasing number of anti-social attacks.
In one incident a brick was thrown at the window of a fire tender in Tallaght and there have also been a number of incidents where laser lights have been directed at engine drivers and crews in an apparent attempt to blind them.
IFESA National Secretary, John Kidd, said the weekend incidents were worrying as they come ahead of Halloween - the busiest and most dangerous time of year for fire crews and emergency personnel.
“The Tallaght incident was a serious one and left a fire engine out of service while it was being repaired.
“The current level of ‘anti-social' behaviour directed at emergency personnel is a bad omen for the weeks ahead as we build up to Halloween when unfortunately it is more likely that members and fire and ambulance service will face injury and assault and have vehicles damaged”. He said.
He also criticised the government for voting down a Fianna Fail bill which would have seen mandatory sentences imposed for those convicted of attacking emergency crews.
“There is need for specific legislation to protect emergency personnel from assault and send a clear message to those involved in such attacks that they will not be tolerated and the law will deal with them harshly.
“The threat to fire and ambulance personnel will continue until the Government brings forward legislation and we are calling for that legislation now”, said Mr Kidd.