back to article Obese cost London fire brigade £300k

The London fire brigade has over the past five years been called to 128 emergencies involving "excessively overweight" people trapped in "beds, baths or chairs" - at a cost of £292,992, the Evening Standard reports. The total bill includes incidents in NHS hospitals and those involving prising the obese from their homes "when …


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  1. Anonymous John

    "128 emergencies"

    That tells us nothing about the numbers of excessively obese people. It could even represent one fat bastard rescued 128 times.

    Mine's the XXXXXL one.

  2. Mike

    On the other side of the coin......

    Fat people usually* consume more than they need, which brings in more tax, this is exactly the smoking costs money/no it doesn't argument, and, like smokers, fat people don't live as long so they are less likely to be a pensions burden in later life.

    Personally, I think the skinny non smokers are scum because they contribute less to the economy.

    *yea, usually - as in almost without exception, it's not genetic, you consume more calories than you burn therefore you are fat.

  3. Luther Blissett

    PC != personal computer

    I believe the O word has been proscribed by nu labour - prOscribed, not prEscribed - and it remains only to burn all deviant dictionaries, wrap content filters around the intertubes, and fry a small part of the prefrontal lobes of all over-5s.

    And offer up such Good Works to the nu insect overlards.

  4. stu

    spontanious combustion

    Also, fat people spontaniously combust.

    i.e. they are the ones you find burned to a cinder in a perfectly good armchair.. having had their fat slowly burned off by a wick (clothes, etc).

    These stats don't take account of that either.

    fat b4stards.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Who will be the first?

    To say "Yeah, but it's worse in America". C'mon, you know you're *dying* to!

  6. Ash
    Thumb Down

    A little perspective

    Obese people, over the past 5 years, have cost the UK taxpayer less than the value of an MP's second home.

    Tell me, how many political spindoctors can you buy for 300k? No doubt not enough to make ContactPoint sound like a good idea.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    no more references to fat americans then?

    I think I've seen a few Belgians and Germans that weren't exactly svelte either.

  8. Edward Miles


    Typical fire brigade, wasting money! They need a new manager in pronto to trim the fat...

  9. Lars Petersson
    Paris Hilton

    Here's an idea...

    I bet that if the fire brigade dangled a box of Krispy Kreme's in front of some of these people, they'd suddenly be able to move just fine...

  10. A J Stiles
    Black Helicopters

    Hmm ..... I smell something .....

    I smell something here.

    Are we really getting heavier, or are we just getting more reluctant to move people? Or even just getting keener to talk about it?

    I don't buy this whole "obesity epidemic" thing. It's a meme that the Government are drilling into us, in order to groom us into accepting a stealth tax on food. And because it's a short step from controlling what a person eats to controlling what they think.

  11. Daniele Futtorovic


    > Shadow health minister Mike Penning said it demonstrated

    > "the severe strain the growing obesity epidemic is putting our

    > emergency services under"

    How high's the military budget again? How much cash has been shoved up banks' arses lately, again?

    Silly me. It's all the fatsos' fault, of course.

  12. Alan Fisher

    Eat like a sparrow

    Though i have yet to see it, I have heard some obese folks describe their consumption habits as ' I eat like a sparrow' meaning they consume very little indeed....but

    have you seen sparrows eat? They are greedy little barstewards I can tell you!

    I'd be spherical if I ate like one of those feathered gormands!

  13. Gianni Straniero

    Porky Grill

    £292,992 is an eye-catchingly precise figure. Why not call it three hundred grand and spend the change on fry-ups and urns of super-sweet tea?

    Mine's the extra-large breathing apparatus.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up


    Your forgetting your metabolism your dont actually need to burn the calories you eat you do it yourself...

    If you burnt 500 calories a day you would loose a pound in fat a week... approximately (based on average adult)

  15. Anonymous Coward


    Surely there must be some mistake here. Is el Reg really expecting us to believe there are fat people other places in the world than just the U.S.? I thought that was a thing of " 'murkin" thinking that we were the only country in the whole world capable of producing fat bastards.

    Now if there were only a way to triple the UK population, us Americans could make every other joke/insult about our cousins 'cross the pond as being next in line for Richard Simmons workouts and third rate "diet" pills that cause gray, oily discharge and being just fat, whining layabouts.

    I, for one welcome our new and improved, BMI challenged, overly watched, database mongering, thinking of the children while stuffing kabobs in their gullets, overlords.

  16. Dave in the States
    Paris Hilton

    "when they have become too fat to walk"...

    So the food they consume comes to them how? Either they are motivated to get it themself (Krispie Kreme comment above) or someone provides it. Shouldn't be that hard to fix the problem. Even Pooh got unstuck from Rabbit's door after not eating for a while.

    When PH gets "stuck", she doesn't really mind.

  17. Anonymous Coward

    Leave them there

    If they can't be moved from their house etc. then just leave them there to starve until they can move again (or never move again), and if they are treated, bill them and up the amount of tax they pay.

  18. Andrew Sheppard

    Fat Chance

    Please clarify.

    I think your figures refer only to the live ones.

    Stories I have heard from paramedics about removing dead fatsos from rooms they could no longer waddle out of would curdle your cheese ..............................

  19. spam

    Shock figure

    128 calls 292992 quid. It really costs 2289 quid to lift an obese person out of a chair or bath?

    That's the real shock figure.

  20. Steve Evans


    Maybe they should stick to fires... Put the fatty in the burning building and watch them sweat of those pounds! Or maybe even run for the first time in years!

  21. Richard

    Fatty fatty bom bom

    I commented on this article on another news site (shock horror i'm not faithful to El Reg!). You have to blame (although not entirely) these supermarket home delivery services. They promote such a lazy assed attitude - I can sit on my fat ass and get food delivered to me, thus eliminating probably the only excercise these fat bastards get (walking/rolling to the shops).

    I'm sorry but anyone who lacks the common sense to do even the most basic form of excercise and lose the ability to move properly deserves what they get. If the fire brigade charged them personally for the removal service cases would soon drop, on top of that if fat people were charged more for their home delivery it might prompt them to get off their fat asses and burn some calories getting the grub.

    Not matter what excuses I hear as to their condition (gladular, big boned, inherited etc etc blah blah) it boils down to - You're too lazy and moronic. If nature was in charge you couldn't have got that way and if you did you'd be easy prey for predators and so be DEAD - unable to enforce your moronic ways onto future generations.

    I'm a big advocate of survival of the fittest

  22. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

    Re: Fatty fatty bom bom

    Any 'OMG fattest person alive' documentary will show you that anyone who gets that fat has severe psychological issues. It's more a function of mental illness than indolence when it's that extreme. It really isn't that simple, much as I'm sure you'd like it to be.

    Also, may I just say that I hate the practice of saying "I'm sorry but" before expressing an opinion that suggest you're not remotely apologetic. Don't bullshit. Just say what you think and let it stand without faffing about pretending you're reluctant about it.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pot meet kettle

    I hate the practice of saying "may I just say that" before expressing an opinion on a forum you moderate. Of course you may. Just say what you think without faffing about pretending you're reluctant about it.

  24. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    -just order me anotherTerrifying Taco-

    bb says:

    These delightful gentlemen have attained the holy grail of sloppy-chef cooking: Saturday Night Live's Taco Town Taco: a taco in a taco in a gordita in a pizza in a blueberry pancake in batter, deep fried.

    Yes, you can buy these at every kebab shop in Glasgow,

    but it's a very good effort for Americans.

  25. kain preacher

    Leave them there

    If they can't be moved from their house etc. then just leave them there to starve until they can move again (or never move again), and if they are treated, bill them and up the amount of tax they pay..

    Hmm that will work. Cardiac arrest. Hey you lazzy bastard get your ass into the ambulance .

    he is not moving cause he is dead ..

    The people that should be prosecuted are the ones that keep on feeding them. Like Ms Bee said its mental condition. Feeding them beyond what the need after they can't move is the same as leaving and elder person in fecal soaked clothing. Only Difference is you would have compassion for an elderly person that has lost their mental faculties .

  26. Anonymous Coward

    As a lardy lad...

    ...(but a happily mobile one, and diminishing for it, might I add - as if it were anybody elses business), we have, as a society, become accustomed to excess in all walks of our life to the point that we feel it to be an entitlement. Were we to draw a scale with "what we need" at one end, "comfortable sufficiency" somewhere further along and "healthy excess" further along from that we would have "what we actually churn through" somewhere so far down the scale that especially small fonts or sellotaped extensions to the paper would need to be employed to depict it.

    Now I am not extolling some sort of socialist virtue where things are dolled out to folks based on some arbitrary assessment of need, but I am suggesting that we all, in all walks of our life, need to take responsibility for our own consumption and realise that what makes us feel happy is not necessarily good for us and that to moderate our consumption may, in fact, greatly improve our general wellbeing even though it may be at the expense of some transitory pavlovian "joy". The fact is that our own perception of satiety (again, in all areas) has become so skewed that soon, after some natural adaptation, we will probably find the same joy with a little less.

    We all feel outrage at the excessive remuneration of top execs, but folks comfortable with less than us feel similar outrage at our own excesses - whether it be the number of computers we have or the number of televisions or the number of cars or the amount we eat or the amount we drink or the amount we smoke or the amount we just throw away. In our society we are largely given the right to moderate ourselves (we feel outrage when it is taken away from us) but it is also a responsibility and if we took the time to become more aware of our own needs and our own foibles - and moderate ourselves accordingly - we would probably find that we would be happier, less subject to the spikes and troughs of availability, and more able to respond to the needs of others without feeling faux deprivation and its associated outrage. Our governments would have less reason to "deprive" us because we would be less often harming ourselves or others with our own excess. Our industry and innovation might not be so much spent on satisfying our cravings for volume or convenience but, rather, quality.

    Anyhow, that's my rant for the week. Anonymous, because rants are never pretty things and always lead to regret. Probably shouldn't have indulged myself. I am of for a perambulation.

  27. SteveMD

    Fat people are the new "underclass".

    Here we have it more of the "it's okay to get fatty" culture. Next they will be proposing an obesity tax. I would like to ask, what is the yearly cost of peoples stupidity to the fire brigade? What is the cost of partaking in dangerous sports to the emergency services as a whole? Lifestyle choices, whether they are dangerous to our health or not are our choice and this continuous harping on personal decisions affecting wider society is just an excuse to dictate to people how to live their lives.

    I'm sick to death of tabloids exploiting fat, one of the last acceptable forms of bigotry and government fuelling it with their incessant preaching and threats to "protect us from ourselves".

    I propose a new pressure group whose whole purpose shall be to the allegiance of the self-righteous abstainers with the guilty indulgers in their efforts to hammer everyone into the same size, shape and outlook.

    Come on you "guilty indulgers" I'm calling on you all to stand proud, as long as you have the breath, and proclaim your right to smoke, eat, drink and fornicate until you drop. Now is the time!

    Tell the puritans to get stuffed!

  28. SteveMD


    Should read; "whose whole purpose shall be to oppose the allegiance of the self-righteous abstainers with the guilty indulgers in their efforts to hammer everyone into the same size, shape and outlook."

    I'm serious about this. Aren't people getting tired of the "latte set" telling what is and is not acceptable behaviour? They try to rationalise their prejudices with "the effect on wider society", but as has been pointed out, in the scheme of things such expense is generally of less cost to the country than a gagle of unneeded spin-doctors.

    Where do we draw the line? At what point do we say, you are free, but not to do things we find distasteful? We already have laws which will lock people up on the grounds of taste alone, so eating "unhealthily", drinking more than the recommended amount, offending our sight by being fat and wobbly or thin an rake-like or just plain not being "one of us", ie. those who believe they are our "rulers", will be next.

    Time to say NO! I'll eat all the junk I decide to, I'll drink as much I as think is reasonable, not you, I'll gamble, smoke, wank and watch internet porn, not because you don't like it, but because I do. I'll play violent video games and read trashy novels, I'll think for myself and I refuse to be one of your identikit clones.

    I hereby inaugurate the "GET STUFFED YOU SELF-RIGHTEOUS GITS!" campaign.

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