Gloucestershire

Gloucestershire Fire Service to receive a £1.8m grant

Fire service communication systems in Gloucestershire are to be upgraded with a £1.8m government grant.

The funding for the county fire service was announced minister for fire Bob Neil, in parliament earlier.

It comes after the government terminated plans for a national fire control centre, last year.

The project would have seen emergency call handling and fire engine dispatch provided from a new centre in Taunton.

The spokesman said the termination had left the authority "well overdue" to replace vital communications equipment.

'Extremely pleased'

Chief Fire Officer Jon Hall said he was "delighted to finally be able to upgrade the ageing equipment and improve systems for call handling and turning-out fire engines".

"Gloucestershire operates a unique mix of tri-service arrangements with police and ambulance Services," he said.

"Successful operations during the floods of 2007 and more recently during busy operations last summer prove to us the value of continuing to invest in this local solution."

Radio systems, allowing services to talk to each other, and vehicle location systems that ensure the nearest fire engine to any incident is dispatched are among the services being upgraded.

Councillor Will Windsor-Clive at Gloucestershire County Council said: "I am extremely pleased with this grant and look forward to the public seeing further benefits in the way emergencies are handled within the county."

Money is to be released by the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) over the coming weeks.

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