Saturday, 9 July 2011

Fire service could struggle to cover busway emergency

A leading Liberal Democrat Councillor has warned that £6 million worth of potential cuts to the fire service across the county could leave the service stretched to deal with an emergency on the new Guided Busway

Nigel Bell, Liberal Democrat Leader on Cambridgeshire Fire Authority has spoken out as emergency fire service trials are due to take place this evening (Friday, July 1) on the new bus route.

He has expressed his concerns because the proposed fire cuts include plans to remove the second fire engine at St Ives Station and to make the second appliance at Cambridge and Huntingdon fire station day-crewed only.

"It is obviously prudent to be carrying out these trials,” he said; “however, with £6 million of potential cuts planned there must be concern that the service will be stretched to provide emergency services at any future real incident.

"I have serious concerns about the services' future ability to respond to serious incidents if they are allowed to make these cuts to the front-line."

Liberal Democrat Councillors on the Fire Authority have opposed cuts to front line services.