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Torquay fire cuts will put 'lives at risk' - sign our online petition

By Herald Express  |  Posted: February 02, 2013

Comments (18)

PROPOSED cuts in fire services will be the difference between lives and properties being saved and a tragedy, a Torquay councillor has claimed.

Darren Cowell, Labour councillor for the Tormohun ward, strongly opposes the £5.5million cuts Devon and Somerset Fire Service is planning to make.

He believes they are a cut too far, endangering people and putting businesses at risk.

Under Proposal 10, Torquay fire station could lose one of its three full-time response crews.

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Cllr Cowell said: "I'm gravely concerned about these punitive cuts to the fire service in Torbay, an area with a high concentration of bedsits, hotels, with a highly concentrated population area.

"I don't accept that frontline services cannot be impacted when you make cuts. They say the same level of coverage can be maintained. If that's the case, why didn't they go ahead with the cuts years ago. This is a cut too far."

He said the proposed cuts would increase response times to 999 calls.

He said: "Response time is critical in any emergency. If you reduce the number of hands on deck you will reduce the ability to save lives and properties."

Torquay fire station currently has two engines which are manned full-time and a third which is used by a part-time or retained crew.

The proposed cuts would reduce the second fire engine from full-time to on-call.

Torquay currently has nine full-time firefighters. The cuts will reduce this to five, backed by the on-call crew.

A full-time crew costs the fire service £1million while a retained crew costs £100,000.

It is feared areas including Stokeinteignhead, Maidencombe, Wellswood, Lincombes, Rockend, Livermead and areas on the periphery will not get a second pump within 13 minutes if the proposal is agreed.

While fire chiefs insist Torquay will retain its three-pump cover, firefighters claim the plans would effectively see the town with just two machines.

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  • Bleach  |  February 03 2013, 12:41PM

    "Omni, it seems you can't question our system of public funding without being branded as a 'Daily Mail Reader" I wonder why. Either way, you're still an a r sehole.

  • omnivore23  |  February 03 2013, 9:31AM

    So that's your idea of a grown up debate is it.

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  • omnivore23  |  February 03 2013, 9:23AM

    I refer you to my previous post.

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  • SidneyNuff  |  February 03 2013, 8:51AM

    More childish behaviour and name calling, you would think the left would take cuts to the fire service a little more seriously.

  • omnivore23  |  February 02 2013, 7:15PM

    I did just explain WHY people cast you as a classic DM puppet Sidney ....but thanks for illustrating my argument so concisely, and promptly for me. Anyone who wants to see what, in Sidney's mind anyway, qualifies as "the mature right" perspective is free to click on his name and see just what a fine contribution he has made to the quality of debate on this forum .....just as they are free to click on mine to see what, in Sidney's mind anyway, qualifies as "the immature left" perspective..... Most people I imagine will not do so as they have a life and can see what a dork you are pretty much straight away. Anyway - been down the Circus yet? Eh? Eh ? Phwoarrr!

  • SidneyNuff  |  February 02 2013, 6:04PM

    DM puppet, more childish behaviour from the immature left.

  • omnivore23  |  February 02 2013, 5:37PM

    The reason people cast you as a DM puppet sidney is not because you challenge public spending, but because you do so in such a childish way without ever responding to challenge without changing the subject, muddying the water or resorting to ad hominem attacks. If you want to be treated like a grown up then I suggest you start acting like one.

  • SidneyNuff  |  February 02 2013, 9:40AM

    Omni, it seems you can't question our system of public funding without being branded as a 'Daily Mail Reader'. In communist russia they used to brand anyone who questioned the system as 'counter revolutionaries'. It seems the left still have a lot of growing up to do.

  • omnivore23  |  February 01 2013, 11:58PM

    Uncharitable indeed - unlike St Sidney.

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  • omnivore23  |  February 01 2013, 11:53PM

    Uncharitable indeed - Unlike Sidney - who often tosses a sov or two to a comely gutter-wench, especially if she looks like Jeremy Clarkson and knows her way around a rolled up Daily Mail. Cor!