West Bridgford nighttime emergency fire cover removal plans go to consultation – Have your say

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The Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service is facing challenges amid pressure on its budget, primarily due to inflation, pension costs, future uncertainties including salary rewards, and the cost of living crisis.

Legally, the Fire Authority must establish a balanced budget, and in 2023 the organization estimates it needs to save £2-3 million..

This expected level of savings will require changes to the number of firefighters and firefighters in the county.

Over the past three years, the Service has witnessed incidents countywide in seven minutes and 52 seconds on average, less than the eight-minute target set by the Fire Authority. It also conducted 26,000 Safe and Well visits to vulnerable community members and 3,000 building fire safety audits.

However, the ongoing financial challenge continues to be felt across the Service. This has an impact on the structure of the organization, its resources and the services it can provide.

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The Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service is funded by a combination of council tax and government funding.

A review of support roles and operational roles identified key areas where efficiencies could be achieved. These include a reduction in support staff positions and a reduction in firefighters and fire engines.

Over the past 18 months, the Service has undertaken a comprehensive risk assessment. The analysis explored the types of incidents firefighters are most likely to encounter, where they are most likely to occur, and the times of day when the county experiences the highest levels of demand. . At the same time, an independent, industry-leading specialist was commissioned to find an option that saves money and has the least impact on response times.

Based on these findings, the Fire Authority today agreed to launch a public consultation to:

  • Remove one of the two fire trucks from the London Road fire station.
  • Remove one of the two fire trucks from the Stockhill Fire Station.
  • Abolish the night crew at West Bridgford Fire Station, leaving only the day crew.
  • Transform the Ashfield Fire Station from a day crew and on-call fire truck to a permanent fire truck and on-call fire truck.

In total, these changes will generate approximately £2 million in savings per year.

In previous years, changes to the Service’s response model were based on current financial difficulties. These changes included the decision to make Ashfield day crew in 2018. Now, due to other proposed changes and recent demand data, it is proposed that Ashfield be readjusted to a fire truck at full time and a fire truck on call. .

Overall, the proposals result in an average seven-second increase in countywide response times.

Regardless of the changes, the closest and most available device will always be sent when you call 999. This is the same current operating model.

Fire Authority Chairman Michael Payne said: ‘Let me be absolutely clear, today’s vote is about the request for public comment, not the removal of frontline services.’

Fire Chief Craig Parkin said: “Rather than simply making cuts, this redistributive proposal meets the service’s forecast savings, while maintaining the best possible standard of incident response, across all areas of Nottinghamshire.

“We in no way propose these changes as a good thing, but we cannot afford to do nothing.

“We are already working efficiently with the resources available to us, showing clear improvements in our recent report from Her Majesty’s Inspection which was rated ‘Good’ in all areas. We are grateful to our communities for your support of the work we do, but we are asked to provide more for less.

“As an industry, we have faced significant financial pressures for several years. We are used to achieving cost savings that allow us to maintain our operational standards and deliver our services.

“Keeping Nottinghamshire communities safe is our primary goal. In the same way, we must take care of our staff so that they can take care of you. It is our best option in extremely difficult national circumstances.

“We will continue to be more efficient by placing our operational fire engines where they are needed most.

“At this time, nothing is final while we consult on these proposals. As Fire Chief, I am calling on people across Nottinghamshire to get involved in the consultation and have their say.

Jonathan County Councilor Wheeler who represents West Brigford Southern Division

and is the Leader of the Opposition for the Nottinghamshire Fire Authority told The Wire:

“It is devastating for the residents of West Bridgford and Rushcliffe that the proposals have been passed today.

“We are now entering a period of consultation and it is important that everyone makes their voice heard.

“All Union and Independent Authority members representing areas of Nottinghamshire voted for the recommendations today, and all Conservatives voted against.

“We did our best to make it apolitical, even agreeing to support an amendment from two working class councilors to delay the vote until more information was available, because even they saw that these proposals were not not acceptable. However, the rest of the Labor and Independent administration pushed it through.

“As leader of the Conservative group, I have continued to offer to work together to find a way to avoid these measures, and that offer still stands as I will do my best to protect our service and keep our people safe. residents, but instead today the president decided to attack me for making a statement simply stating where he was representing.

“Given that members of his own city party disagreed with the recommendations, I imagine he is under a lot of pressure today, especially when his own people realize what he voted for. .”

Take part in the public consultation from 30 September 2022. You will also find further information and frequently asked questions on our website.

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