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Armed Forces Act 2016

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This is the original version (as it was originally enacted).

16Powers of Ministry of Defence fire-fighters in an emergency

This section has no associated Explanatory Notes

(1)A Ministry of Defence fire-fighter who is authorised in writing by the Secretary of State for the purposes of this section may do anything the fire-fighter reasonably believes to be necessary—

(a)if the fire-fighter reasonably believes a fire to have broken out or to be about to break out, for the purpose of extinguishing or preventing the fire or protecting life or property;

(b)if the fire-fighter reasonably believes a road traffic accident to have occurred, for the purpose of rescuing people or protecting them from serious harm;

(c)for the purpose of preventing or limiting damage to property resulting from action taken as mentioned in paragraph (a) or (b).

(2)In particular, a fire-fighter may under subsection (1)

(a)enter premises or a place, by force if necessary, without the consent of the owner or occupier of the premises or place;

(b)move or break into a vehicle without the consent of its owner;

(c)close a road;

(d)stop and regulate traffic;

(e)restrict the access of persons to premises or a place.

(3)In this section—

  • “Ministry of Defence fire-fighter” means a person whose duties as an employee or servant of the Crown, or as an employee of a government contractor, include—

    (a)

    extinguishing fires on defence property,

    (b)

    protecting life and property in the event of a fire on defence property, and

    (c)

    rescuing people or protecting them from serious harm in the event of a road traffic accident on defence property;

  • “defence property” means property used—

    (a)

    for the purposes of the Secretary of State with responsibility for defence,

    (b)

    for the purposes of Her Majesty’s forces (within the meaning of the Armed Forces Act 2006) or a visiting force, or

    (c)

    for other defence purposes;

  • “government contractor” means a person who provides services to the Secretary of State with responsibility for defence under contract (and includes a sub-contractor);

  • “road”—

    (a)

    in England and Wales means a highway;

    (b)

    in Scotland has the meaning given in Part 4 of the New Roads and Street Works Act 1991;

    (c)

    in Northern Ireland has the meaning given by Article 2(2) of the Road Traffic Regulation (Northern Ireland) Order 1997 (N.I. 2);

  • “visiting force” means a body, contingent or detachment of the forces of a country that is a visiting force for the purposes of any provision of the Visiting Forces Act 1952.

(4)The Emergency Workers (Obstruction) Act 2006 is amended as follows.

(5)In section 1(2) (obstructing or hindering certain emergency workers)—

(a)after paragraph (a) insert—

(aa)that of a Ministry of Defence fire-fighter (as defined in section 16 of the Armed Forces Act 2016);, and

(b)in paragraph (b), after “paragraph (a)” insert “or (aa)”.

(6)In section 7 (extent etc) at the end insert—

(4)The following extend to Scotland—

(a)sections 1 to 4 so far as they relate to obstructing or hindering a Ministry of Defence fire-fighter or a person assisting such a fire-fighter, and

(b)this section.

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