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Quick-thinking security operative saves life in supermarket

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31 July 2020




Security Operative prevents a distribution centre fire 

The quick thinking of security operative Syed (Sabeel) Hassan stopped a fire from becoming a tragedy.

Syed, who works for approved contractor Amberstone, prevented a serious fire from spreading at Halfords' logistics and distribution Centre in Washford near Redditch last January. His actionsprevented possible mass damage, risk to life and customer disruption.

Syed Hassan was on duty early one Saturday morning. He noticed on the CCTV that there was smoke coming out from under a tented area on the estate. This tented area covered batteries and canisters containing hazardous materials. 

Syed said that his instinct kicked in and he ran towards the tented area. As he was the only person there he quickly moved the canisters away from the fire. Simultaneously he called the fire brigade and it took a few minutes for them to arrive on the site.

By the time the fire brigade arrived the tent was alight. Syed said:

"When there's a small blaze you only have a few seconds to take action. I was doing my job because that's what I'm meant to do. I knew that if I hadn't moved the canisters it would have caused a big a problem. I'm trained and I put my learning into action." 

Syed said that after the incident he returned to his post at the gate house and it was almost if nothing happened. Halfords awarded Syed with some vouchers to thank him for his efforts. The fire brigade told Syed that if he had not taken the action that he did, the incident would have been considerably worse. 

Ian Todd, Chief Executive of the Security Industry Authority, said:

"It's important to remember that many in the security industry are working as critical and key workers during this emergency. Syed's story is testament to the fact that despite the challenges, many operatives and businesses are going the extra mile to serve their communities."   

The SIA is promoting the industry's dedication and commitment through the #SIAHeroes campaign. It is sharing inspiring stories of security operatives who are keeping the public safe and secure at this critical time. 

Read all of our #SIAHeroes stories online here.

- Ends -

Notes to Editors:

  • Pictured left to right: Lee Hammond, Amberstone's Operational Manager, Syed Hassan, and Paul Watts, Halfords Security Manager.
  • For an interview with Syed Hassan, please contact the SIA press office:
  • The SIA has been running #SIAHeroes for the last year, and during COVID-19 is seeking to raise the profile of the contribution that the front line private security industry are making in response to this crisis.
  • Read similar, previous stories online here.

Further information:

  1. The Security Industry Authority is the organisation responsible for regulating the private security industry in the United Kingdom, reporting to the Home Secretary under the terms of the Private Security Industry Act 2001. The SIA's main duties are: the compulsory licensing of individuals undertaking designated activities; and managing the voluntary Approved Contractor Scheme.

 2.       For further information about the Security Industry Authority or to sign up for email updates visit: The SIA is also on Facebook (Security Industry Authority), Twitter (@SIAuk) and LinkedIn.

For media enquiriesonlyplease contact:

SIA Press Office

Security Industry Authority



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