Birmingham & Black Country

Cradley Heath and Halesowen fire stations merger warning

The merger of two fire stations in the West Midlands could compromise public safety, according to the Fire Brigades Union (FBU).

Cradley Heath and Halesowen fire stations are to be replaced by a new station with a single fire engine.

The union says 28 firefighters will be lost when numbers have already been reduced to "dangerous levels".

West Midland Fire Service said it was confident that the standard of service it provides would "remain high".

'Major change'

Vij Randeniya, the chief fire officer, said: "This proposal will not result in any compulsory redundancies for firefighters."

The FBU said it takes at least two fully staffed fire engines to deal with a house fire or road accident.

It claims a "major change" to the original plans will cut the number of fire engines at the new station from two to one.

West Midland Fire Service said no formal decisions had been made on the proposed location for the new station, the timescale or the staffing arrangements.

It said a formal review would be carried out over the coming months to look at the options. There will also be a public consultation.

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