Fire service policy to cost lives?

Last week my former opponent, John Mann MP, rasied an issue about the handful of MPs on duty on a Friday night in a division in Notts. Apparently out of a full compliment of over 2,400 officers only 14 were on duty on a Friday night. I have to say given my experience in Nottinghamshire it wouldn’t surprise me.

I have also written about when the 87 year old Grandma of my wife fell over and broke her shoulder no ambulance came, and she had to self diagnose over the phone in spite of there being an ambulance station literally 200 yards from her flat (which she walked home to).

Now a story reaches me about what is happening to the fire service. I completely understand the luncacy of people calling out the fire service on flase alarm. It must annoy the hell out of the firemen and women – and as we were always told at school – false alarms cost lives.

According to a friend in the fire service, now if you call the fire service they first of all ask you – do you really need them? Fine – againI can appreciate that. The same probably applies to doctors who have to deal with people with sniffles which means really ill patients cant get appointments. BUT what apparently happens now is that if you report a fire and dial 999 they don’t send a fire engine. They send someone in the fire service, out in a car, who will then have a look and if they think its serious enough, a fire engine will come.

Hang on. I always thought time was crucial. If not why do fire engines have blue lights and sirens if they dont have to get to an emergency quickly. I an see th logic in sending a car around first – as it will cut out fase alarm, but unfortunately isnt that part of the job. What happens when someone dies because the car took 10 inutes to arrive and then the engines another 10 minutes? Surely turning up to a few falsi alarms may be a price worth paying if when time really matters, the firemen and women get there and do their great work?

Is this a policy that happens elsewhere??

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