The Government is planning to close 46 fire service control centres in England, slashing staffing levels from 1500 to just 600 according to a leaked report; the Fire Brigades Union has damned the proposals saying the project will end in ‘total failure’.
The leaked report to the union, marked restricted and confidential is alleged to unveil far-reaching reform.
According to the union, the report details plans to close all existing centres and open nine regional units in their place. The cost is reported to be £754.5 million, predicted to give a returned saving of £42.3 million over ten years but says the union, the report also makes it clear that there may be a loss of £107 million over the same period.
Further figures concealed from the Fire Authorities, say the union show that almost all the savings will come from cutting job levels.
Fire Brigades Union General Secretary Andy Gilchrist said:
“This dangerous plan will axe all our excellent command and control centres and be a financial burden on the fire service and council tax payers for years to come. It’s expensive, it’s risky, it won’t save a single life and could end in total failure.
“Ministers are hiding the true costs from fire authorities and have made public claims which cannot possibly be justified. Slashing staffing levels from the 1,500 already over-worked personnel to 600 is dangerous folly which is why they want to keep the numbers secret.”