Fire chiefs urged to revise plans for Yate fire station

January 31 2017

CIVIC leaders in Yate have asked Avon Fire and Rescue to revise its proposals for cover at the town’s fire station in order to avoid a “dramatic cut” in its service.

CIVIC leaders in Yate have asked Avon Fire and Rescue to revise its proposals for cover at the town’s fire station in order to avoid a “dramatic cut” in its service.

Under plans currently being debated, the station would switch to only having full-time crews on duty at the station in the daytime, with on-call retained staff to be relied on to provide cover at night.

The change is among a number of proposals drawn up by Avon Fire and Rescue, which has to save £5 million a year up to 2020 due to a cut in the central government grant it receives.

Yate Town Council, which has objected to the proposed cut, said it had analysed the arguments and come up with a “comprehensive plan” showing there were other ways to make service provision more equitable and which would not involve “such a dramatic cut to the Yate service”.

It has asked Avon Fire and Rescue to investigate the options it has outlined and respond with a revised proposal “which will not leave Yate with a lower level of cover than even small hamlets in the southern part of the Avon Fire Service area”. 

The Fire Brigades Union in Avon said the cuts would mean the loss of 49 firefighter jobs, as well as removal of full-time cover at night at Yate.

Firefighter Gary Spindler, chairman of the union’s Avon branch, said: “Firefighters in Avon believe these cuts would seriously compromise our ability to deal with emergency incidents and keep the public safe.”

Yate station used to have full-timers on duty only in the day and retained crews on call at night until 2009, when full-timers were brought in around the clock in response to an anticipated growing need for its services in the expanding town.

But that predicted increase has not materialised and the greater housing development in the area has not had any significant effect on the demand for fire and rescue services.