Following the announcement by Suffolk County Council of a consultation on cutting staffing numbers to zero full-time fire-fighters at Felixstowe Fire Station, Labour councillors are concerned at the impact on the response times and the devastating effect that could have on local residents and businesses.
In 2011 Felixstowe Fire Station had eight full-time fire fighters but following two previous consultations this number had been cut to two with the current proposal being to leave the 29,000 people, 1,500 businesses and 12,000 homes with no full-time fire-fighters.
Concerns have been expressed by the Labour Opposition Spokesperson, Cllr Peter Gardiner, about the ability of the fire service to respond to any major incidents that occur in the Felixstowe area. Cllr Gardiner said “Whilst there is a need to recognise the changing role of the fire service and the great work that fire fighters do we are hugely concerned about the impact cutting the number of full-time fire officers to zero will have on response times.”
He added; “Whilst it may make sense on paper to implement these cuts now I am very concerned that as the town of Felixstowe grows, the fire coverage in the town will become woefully inadequate. There are plans for 1,750 new homes to be developed in Felixstowe and if these are built this could lead to problems caused by a lack of fire service coverage.
The consultation is open now and will close on Tuesday 4th March. Local residents will have the chance to challenge the council’s plans at a public consultation meeting at Felixstowe Fire Station on Wednesday 19th February between 4.00 and 8.00pm.
Cllr Gardiner said; “It is vital that the public make their voice heard and let the council really know what they think about the damaging cuts that will only lead to increased risk to the people of Felixstowe.
NOTES TO EDITORS
The consultation can be found at
For more information contact:
Cllr Peter Gardiner, Opposition Spokesperson for Public Protection
Tel: 07545 423825