20 February 2013

Super Brigade?

Sticking with the emergency services theme…

Two West Country fire brigades are in talks over merging to save money. Avon Fire and Rescue Service and Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service said the move could "improve effectiveness". The Devon and Somerset service faces a shortfall of £5.5m over two years and unions fear 150 jobs are at risk. The services said they were exploring everything from sharing support services to a full merger. The Fire Brigades Union (FBU) said such moves would not improve services. BBC News

I guess its almost inevitable these days that Fire Brigades are going to end up merging with each other. We already have Devon & Somerset so the addition of Avon would fit, but you do have to wonder how long Cornwall is likely to remain independent?

Devon and Somerset Fire Rescue R641VDV

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  1. It really does seem inevitable Emergency Services will be merged together in order to save money - the part of the country I'm from (Romford), their A&E (Queens) has now been merged with the one from Ilford.. Queens was bad enough having to deal with injuries from the all too typical punch-ups and stabbings in Romford, but merging it with Ilford... who's stupid idea was that!! If they were both 'respectable' areas then it would be fine, but being honest, both are horribly rough areas, for example someone was stabbed to death outside Romford Station in broad daylight at 3.30PM last year on a weekday afternoon in front of school children - Queens A&E was on the news the other week stating the true fact that some patients have to wait up to eleven hours before been seen - that's before the merge with Ilford.

    All we can say is we're not the only part of the country who's emergency services are being merged in order to save costs, and consequently the standard and quality of care noticeably decreases.

    http://www.romfordrecorder.co.uk/news/family_tells_of_appalling_condition_of_queen_s_hospital_romford_kids_a_e_1_1732599 <They ought to take note of this and act on it. It would appear the people who make these decisions are only interested in the money saved, and not the quality of care/conditions provided. Queens never has been one of the best hospitals in the world, although it was never anywhere near as bad as is now. I really hope we don't see similar stories - I've always found our Emergency Services to be nothing short of outstanding.

  2. I feel a full merger will be the best option! The South Western Ambulance Service Foundation NHS Trust has just taken over Great Western Ambulance Services NHS Trust as they were failing to meet targets and had spiralling budgets. It will mean a saving on management post and admin etc.

    The fire service have the option of making Plymstock and Plympton stations retained whilst keeping the other in the city full time stations. Yelverton Fire station attend more shouts than Plympton or Plymstock stations and is retained, so why should Plympton or Plystock be any exception? Yeleverton are also consistantly meeting their call out targets so there shouldn't be any fear that it will take longer to get a fire appliance to the scene of a 999 call, and there is still the full time stations to rely on too.

    The fire service does need to reform, we in the ambulance service have had to along with our police and coast guard colleagues, including pay cuts and having to work longer. I cant believe in the 21st century we are paying staff to sleep so that they can go and carry out secondary employment when off shift. The fire service do a great job, but they need to reform just like every other public sector provider has done.


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