Fire Brigades Union

Fire Brigades Union

December 16, 2008 08:16 ET

The Fire Brigades Union: Fewer Firefighters for Hereford and Worcester

WORCESTER, UNITED KINGDOM--(Marketwire - Dec. 16, 2008) - Hereford and Worcester are to lose 12 of their firefighters next year, under plans to be officially announced on December 15.

This brings the total number of firefighters lost to the counties since 2003 to 38.

"This decision means the public will be less safe in 2009 than they were in 2008; and they are substantially less safe in 2008 than they were five years ago" says Hereford and Worcester Fire Brigades Union Chair Pete Hope.

"Every firefighter post we lose means a slower, less efficient and less effective response to emergencies. It means those left are more thinly spread and operate under more stress. It means spending more money on overtime payments. Council tax payers are paying more and getting less for it" said Mr. Hope.

Educating the community about avoiding fires is good, but it is no substitute for a properly resourced and trained fire and rescue service.

Following the Fire Brigades Union's commissioned research from the Labour Research Department. From February 1996 until October 2002 there were no recorded firefighter deaths at fires in the UK. However in the last five years (2003-2007), at least 13 firefighters have been killed at fires.

The report shows that to the question:

Do you support the proposal to reduce the Firefighter establishment by 12 posts?

11% respondents said YES
84% respondents said NO
4% undecided

It goes on to say:

There was overwhelming opposition to reducing Firefighter numbers, with a whole range of concerns including the Health and Safety of Firefighters; the fact that 7 firefighters working per shift has been tried before and doesn't work.

To the question:

Do you support our proposal to streamline back office services to achieve efficiencies?

79% respondents said YES
8% respondents said NO
8% undecided

To view the "Integrated Risk Management Plans", please visit the following links:

Contact Information

  • Fire Brigades Union
    Pete Hope