At least one firefighter out saving lives is attacked in London every single week, shocking statistics reveal.
Attacks on on-duty firefighters in the capital are at their highest level for FIVE years, with 75 incidents recorded in 2016/17.
The latest figures show the firefighting heroes are suffering the highest number of attacks since 77 were recorded in 2011/12.
The most common type of attack was verbal abuse, with 48 incidents in 2016/17, the highest number of incidents since at least 2010/11.
There were also 10 incidents of objects being thrown at firefighters or appliances, four of harassment, three of physical abuse and 10 other acts of aggression.
One firefighter was seriously injured due to an object being thrown in the same time period.
The figures came after a firefighter was injured after a firework was thrown during Bonfire Night call-out this year.
The number of incidents had dropped in the years in between, with a low of 46 incidents recorded in 2014/15, with 62 recorded in 2015/16.
Attacks are 'born out of a lack of education'
The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) believes the vast majority of attacks on fire engines, fire service equipment and firefighters themselves are relatively minor and occur in some of the most impoverished communities in the UK.
Dave Green, national officer of the FBU and a former firefighter, said: "Violent attacks on firefighters are opportunistic and thankfully rare.
"The vast majority of attacks are not serious, and they are usually born out of a lack of education and a lack of understanding of the neutrality of the firefighter role.
"We as the firefighters’ union favour a preventative rather than a punitive approach to this worrying problem."
As well as this, 12 firefighters were slightly injured as a result of the attacks. Of these, six were injured by objects being thrown, two each by physical abuse and harassment, and one each by verbal abuse and other acts of aggression.
Across England, firefighters were attacked 738 times while on duty in 2016/17, the highest number of incidents since 835 were recorded in 2011/12.
The number of incidents had dropped in the years in between, with a low of 578 incidents recorded in 2014/15, with 622 recorded in 2015/16.
The most common type of attack was verbal abuse, with 403 incidents in 2016/17, the highest number of incidents since at 435 recorded in 2011/12.
There were also 206 incidents of objects being thrown at firefighters or appliances, 18 of harassment, 44 of physical abuse and 64 other acts of aggression.
London Fire Brigade was contacted for comment.
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