Wiltshire

Public consulted over fire service plans in Wiltshire

The public are being consulted over plans on the future running of Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service.

Chief Fire Officer Simon Routh-Jones said the service faced a period of "real change" to meet government demand and the public's expectation.

Among the proposals being considered are changes to the shift system and paying retained firefighters a salary rather than a call-out rate.

The 12-week consultation comes ahead of planned £1.8m cuts, to be made by 2014.

'Maintain effectiveness'

Mr Routh-Jones said he was also looking to ways of using crews more effectively with firefighters attached to a community rather than a station.

"This is the start of the consultation period," he said. "We have until the end of May to discuss the proposals in a lot more detail with our staff, and we will also listen to the views of our local communities.

"We need to find a way of working more efficiently without losing our effectiveness, and I believe these proposals achieve that."

The Fire Brigades Union said it had criticised the plans along with proposals to change working shift patterns for full-time firefighters.

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