Watch the moment firework narrowly misses firefighter in Leeds

The moment that a firework nearly hits a firefighter in Leeds can be seen in newly released footage.

Firefighter Jack Furbisher

Jack Furbisher was "half a foot" away as it launched by him during a hectic Bonfire Night shift - which saw 16 recorded attacks on fire crews across the area.

West Yorkshire Police today released the footage as part of a commitment to stopping "such mindless behaviour".

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There were nine attacks on crew members during Halloween (October 31), police say.

Firefighter Jack Furbisher

Between November 1 and 6 this year there were 20 attacks recorded, with four during the rest of November and four in December to date.

The force said that the worst attacks involve throwing of stones or fireworks towards firefighters or fire engines.

Mr Furbisher, of Cleckheaton Fire Station’s Green Watch, narrowly avoided being hit when the crew attended a fire in the open containing wood and tyres in the Beeston area of Leeds.

He said: “There was a big group of teenagers and straight away, with it being that time of year, it’s in the back of your mind. I had only got off the wagon 30 seconds prior.

The Memorandum of Understanding is signed.

“I jumped a bit. Thankfully it did not hit me square in the chest it could have been a lot worse.

“It’s one of those mindless things that unfortunately we see now and again and it does seem to get worse at that time of year because it’s dark and fireworks are readily available.

“It’s not a nice situation to find yourself in - then you spend the rest of the incident with one mind on the job and one mind looking over your back or your mate’s back.

“I think the firework was about half a foot from me and exploded behind me. Had I been a foot either side it could have been a different story.”

Firefighter Jack Furbisher

During November, police have already begun training days with firefighters about how to recognise the signs of public order and how to defuse potentially volatile situations.

This year West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service launched a publicity campaign called More Than A Uniform to appeal to people’s conscience and highlight the fact that the people behind the uniform are only human, with families, personal lives and dependents.

In the latest move, the service has established a Memorandum of Understanding with West Yorkshire Police which will "ensure fast and effective reporting, investigation and, where possible, prosecution" following an attack on a member of staff.

Chief Fire Officer John Roberts said: “It is a sad reality that our firefighters are being attacked whilst going about the course of their work protecting people and property.

The Memorandum of Understanding is signed.

“Whilst the attacks are commonly around the Bonfire season, they have continued since then and are happening all year round.

“The Police are equally as appalled by this as us and we welcome their backing in condemning these attacks and ensuring that together we capture the best evidence and do everything we can to bring perpetrators to justice.”