PERSHORE’s MP Harriett Baldwin has called for extra work to make sure south Worcestershire will be properly protected as the fire service consults on service changes.
The West Worcestershire MP met with the county’s fire chief to hear his plans to re-organise local fire crew coverage.
Chief Fire Officer Jon Pryce is currently consulting on proposals to re-organise the number of on-call staff but increase permanent staff, to allow him to make better use of the service’s resources.
“I have had a detailed briefing from the Chief Fire Officer, and I am grateful for his time to explain what he has in mind.
“Having listened to his briefing, I am clear that we must ensure that the right level of cover is available for a town the size of Malvern as well as the wider south Worcestershire area.
“We discussed the issues that he has recruiting on-call staff and I would be reluctant to see any proposals come forward that saw a compulsory reduction in on-call head count.
“Fewer people are choosing to work on-call shifts for the service, and I think this should be an important balancing factor in any decision about allocation of staff resources.
“I welcome the plans to invest in extra vehicles to help crew attend incidents, but I am keen to see the plans honed to ensure these changes improve local coverage.
“I also welcome the Chief Fire Officer’s assurance that no involuntary redundancies will take place in Malvern and that there are spare vehicles for use during maintenance periods for each engine.”
The plans will be consulted on until March and details on the proposals can be found at www.opinionresearch.co.uk/HWFire.