Deadline looms for fire decision

MP Gordon Marsden and Fire Brigades Union Blackpool representative Chris Molloy (below) have called on the public to make their views known on proposed fire cuts.
MP Gordon Marsden and Fire Brigades Union Blackpool representative Chris Molloy (below) have called on the public to make their views known on proposed fire cuts.

Just eight days remain for members of the public to have their say on proposals to scrap one of Blackpool’s fire engines.

And union bosses have today warned the lives of both firefighters and those trapped in blazes will be lost if the engine is scrapped.

Fire Brigades Union Blackpool representative Chris Molloy

Fire Brigades Union Blackpool representative Chris Molloy

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service is consulting on proposals as part of a wide-ranging cost-cutting plan.

The loss of a Forest Gate fire engine, representing a saving of £1m, would not come into place until 2017/18 should the fire authority approve the savings suggestions.

The cuts could also see South Shore Fire Station move from being a wholetime station, with four watches and one fire engine, to day crewing plus, meaning just one watch with one fire engine and on call firefighters at night.

But Chris Molloy, the Fire Brigades Union’s Blackpool representative, said: “The more we cut, the more firefighters are sadly injured and killed.

“Firefighting is a dangerous job, we all accept that, but members of the public will be at further risk and that’s not something we want to do.

“This is the last chance for people to have their say on the proposal and its effects before the deadline. There’s still time to influence this.”

A consultation is running until next Sunday, October 20.

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden said: “I’m not yet at all convinced all these cuts are necessary or justified.

“Our firefighters do a terrific job in Blackpool – nothing should be done that impairs their performance or safety.

“I’d urge everyone to respond to the consultation and say loud and clear what our concerns are.”

To take part in the consultation, visit: www.lancsfirerescue.org.uk/campaign.

Alternatively you can post your views to Risk Management Team, Lancashire Fire & Rescue Service Headquarters, Preston, PR2 3LH.

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