Derbyshire Fire Service : ‘Fit to respond’ proposals

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service have started consultation on their ‘Fit to Respond’ proposals on how they will transform Derbyshire Fire & Rescue Service’s service delivery for 2022 and beyond.

Across Derbyshire the proposals been put forward for consultation will potentially mean :

  • The closure of 19 fire stations;
  • The opening of 8 new stations;
  • Relocation of three stations and introduction of two new RDS (retained duty system) stations;
  • Reduction of the number of wholetime stations to five, with seven wholetime crewed fire engines;
  • A Reduction in the number of RDS standalone stations from 19 to 15;
    This could result in the total number of stations reducing from 31 to 20.

Locally it would see Glossop Fire Station changed from having a full time day staff, to been a ‘wholly retained’ staffed station, with only one fire engine (as opposed to the two at current) and one smaller response vehicle (which is listed in the report as been in effect a smaller fire engine with similar albeit reduced capabilities, carrying less equipment, less fire fighters and less water)

The rationale for the change (for Glossop) is that the number of incidents in the area served by the day crewing fire station has decreased over the four year period (2009-2013) by 38%, and that in their assessment the station does not provide the initial emergency response to any areas deemed as very high risk.

In terms of the effects that these changes will have, they note that the proposals would see an increase in response times, from their current listed time of 10 minutes to get to a fire in the Melandra Castle Road area to a new time of 14 minutes, an increase of four minutes which if you watch the video featuring Ross Kemp producing by the Fire Brigade Union around changes in London will leave you concerned.

However if I’m reading the response times bit correctly the times are based on current responses, which are based in part on having folk responding to the call from the houses currently at the station, which are listed in the financial information section as a further expected saving from the changes, meaning that folk responding may not be living as close to the station as at current further delaying a response.

With this added to some of the other changes that are been looked across the High Peak, which include closing the stations at New Mills, Chapel en le Frith and Whaley Bridge and replacing them with one at Furness Vale, closing and rebuilding Buxton’s almost new fire station, the consultation document make grim reading.

You can read the details and come to your own view by going to the Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service Fit to respond consultation by clicking here

The Fire Service will also be attending the December meeting of the council’s community select committee and I’d welcome any views from local’s prior to this (click here for ways to get in touch)

You can also attend one of their public consultation event with the nearest one to us currently been in Buxton on the 22nd November between 9am and 3pm, however I expect (hope) that some additional dates may be added prior to the consultation closing on the 23rd December.

You might also want to consider signing a petition that has been set up objecting and calling on the fire authority to reject the proposals on the 38 degrees site – you can do this by clicking here