Suffolk

Felixstowe fire crew cuts plan for Suffolk Fire Service

Felixstowe fire station Image copyright Google
Image caption The fire station on High Road West currently has four full-time firefighters

Plans to get rid of all full-time firefighters in Felixstowe are being put out to public consultation.

Suffolk Fire Service has been implementing cuts since 2011 and the latest proposal would mean the station would only have on-call fire crews.

The number of full-time firefighters has already been cut from 12 to four.

The service said it was confident on-call firefighters could manage the level of risk in Felixstowe with back-up from other stations.

The changes are being implemented by Conservative-run Suffolk County Council, which agreed to a 12% cut to the fire service's £22.5m annual budget over four years.

The fire service said the long-term plan had always been to turn Felixstowe in to a station staffed only by on-call firefighters and the changes were being introduced in stages.

'Tolerable levels'

Phil Embrey, assistant chief fire officer for Suffolk, said: "We've continued to monitor call levels and risk in the town.

"While it does have an impact on call response times in the daytime, the overall effect is within our tolerable levels of management.

"The call levels in the station have steadily decreased over the last six to eight years and it's really difficult to justify full-time crews when they're answering less than two calls per week."

The public has been asked to complete a survey as part of the six-week consultation on the final stage of cuts.

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