To read the full version of this content please select one of the options below:

The safe tweet: social media use by Ontario fire services

Sharon Lauricella (Faculty of Social Science and Humanities, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa, Canada)
Kristy-Lynn Pankhurst (Faculty of Social Science and Humanities, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, Oshawa, Canada)

International Journal of Emergency Services

ISSN: 2047-0894

Article publication date: 19 March 2018

Issue publication date: 24 October 2018

178

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to examine how fire services use social media to educate the public about safety and fire prevention.

Design/methodology/approach

Grounded theoretical methods were employed in a rigorous qualitative analysis of five significant fire services’ Twitter accounts in Ontario, Canada.

Findings

Seven main themes emerged from the data, with an overarching conclusion that tweets made by fire service organisations and professionals do not focus primarily on fire safety.

Research limitations/implications

This paper addresses a gap in the literature in terms of understanding how social media communicates information about all three lines of defence against fire, with a focus on the first two: public fire safety education, fire safety standards and enforcement and emergency response.

Practical implications

The authors suggest that fire services need to employ a more segmented approach to social media posts with an objective to engage and educate the public.

Originality/value

This paper is the first extensive qualitative analysis to consider the particulars of fire services’ social media presence.

Keywords

Citation

Lauricella, S. and Pankhurst, K.-L. (2018), "The safe tweet: social media use by Ontario fire services", International Journal of Emergency Services, Vol. 7 No. 3, pp. 179-191. https://doi.org/10.1108/IJES-09-2017-0048

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2018, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles