Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union

April 28, 2011 08:05 ET

FBU Dismayed at Lack of Response From Councillor Barry Abraham

ISLE OF WIGHT, ENGLAND--(Marketwire - April 28, 2011) - Fire Brigades Union officials are dismayed that the Cabinet Member for Fire and Community Safety, Councillor Barry Abraham, could today decide to close the Isle of Wights emergency 999 fire control room, without having taken the opportunity to be briefed by Isle of Wight (IOW) FBU officials about their significant professional concerns.

A formal invite to Cllr Abraham has been made by island FBU officials, an invite which was also repeated live during the Ian Mac show on Vectis Radio. Regrettably, Cllr Abrahams has failed to respond despite repeated attempts due to the importance of the issue at hand.

Pete Mawhood, IOW FBU chair, said "This morning a petition with over 1800 signatories has been hand delivered to Cllr Abraham to 'Save the Isle of Wight Fire Control Centre', this includes over 100 signatories from serving Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service firefighters (wholetime, retained and control), officers and civilian staff and is still ongoing.

"The support we have seen from local people has been amazing. They have been calling in to local radio stations and have been stopping firefighters in the street to tell us they do not want to see the closure of their local emergency 999 control room and cannot believe how undemocratic this process appears to be.

"We therefore implore all other county councillors to take up the offer to hear our real, professional concerns and we are extremely disappointed that such a critical decision could be made today without input from our professional members or island residents".

Paul Watts, FBU regional control rep, said "Firefighters have not had the opportunity to formally comment on the proposals nor have their views been sought by senior managers or the IOW Council. So with so many firefighters adding their names to the petition it reflects our deeply held concerns from within the fire service at the prospect of moving the Fire Control to the mainland. Firefighters strongly oppose the plan.

He added "The loss of vital local knowledge could mean a delay to the mobilisation of fire appliances in response to emergencies. It goes without saying that any delay due to uncertainty could, in a critical situation, have life-threatening consequences.

Contact Information