Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union

December 16, 2008 09:51 ET

The Fire Brigades Union: Audit Commission Report "Would Cost Lives"

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Dec. 16, 2008) - Commenting on the Audit Commission's report Rising to the Challenge, FBU gen sec Matt Wrack said today:

These proposals will compromise safety. They will put firefighters and the public at risk.

The Fire Service is a well performing public service which is held in high esteem. These foolish and dangerous proposals will damage that hard-won reputation.

It is clearly written by people with no knowledge whatsoever of firefighting and the fire service, whose only interest is in finding ways to pennypinch on public safety.

For example: it is true that you can save money on smaller fire appliances, so long as you are willing to risk lives by going to fires without the proper equipment, or enough water, or enough firefighters to tackle the incident safely and professionally.

It is true that you can strip fire stations of their night cover, so long as you are willing to risk lives because firefighters cannot get to fires fast enough. We know that the public wants to go to sleep at night knowing firefighters are ready if they are needed. But the Audit Commission does not seem to care what the public wants.

We told the Audit Commission that we recently published a report showing that more firefighters are being killed at fires than at any time for 30 years. I find it incredible that, in the face of this information, they still put forward proposals which will place firefighters in even greater danger.

The Audit Commission has taken no notice of anything they were told by the professionals. If it had, it would not have produced a report which, if implemented in full, will certainly cost lives.

Contact Information

  • Fire Brigades Union
    Francis Beckett
    020 8349 9194 or 07813 001372