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Author Archives: Joe Karp-Savey

Fire and rescue service personnel must receive priority testing and vaccination for coronavirus, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has said after some brigades reported losing hundreds of staff to self-isolation. In a letter to ministers in Westminster and the devolved administrations in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, the FBU has said that without testing, firefighters and control staff could be self-isolating unnecessarily, when they could be on hand to protect the public. The union also says that testing could help reduce the risk of frontline staff transmitting the infection to vulnerable members of the public. London Fire Brigade has at […]
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Interactions between firefighters and the public should temporarily be drastically scaled back to limit coronavirus contaminations, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has said. Non-emergency work such as fire safety visits and inspections, school visits, and public meetings, should be temporarily suspended to reduce the exposure of firefighters to COVID-19 and to protect at-risk individuals from potential contamination from firefighters. A number of fire and rescue services have already taken measures to restrict interaction between firefighters and the public, despite little directive from central government. Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “While the FBU fully supports public engagement and preventative work […]
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Responding to the 2020 UK government Budget, the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) has criticised the Chancellor for failing to recognise the role of firefighters in responding to flooding, for failing to provide building safety funding for buildings under 18m and for promising “pittance” to fund firefighters’ crucial fire safety work. Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “This budget once again fails to end a decade of pay restraint for firefighters and the chronic underfunding of the fire and rescue service. “The government has finally recognised that they did not provide sufficient funding to keep people safe after Grenfell and that […]
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Responding to the third tranche of inspections from Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Fire and Rescue Services, Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union (FBU) general secretary, said: On the national view “This tranche of reports are a complete indictment of the government’s dangerous complacency over the risk of fire, flooding, and other hazardous incidents. Austerity has ravaged our fire and rescue service, leaving residents in many areas at risk. In Gloucester, the inspectorate are clear that changes are needed ‘urgently’, but politicians and fire service management elsewhere must not rest on their laurels. “With no national standards and no national infrastructure coordinating […]
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A major fire at a Travelodge in Brentford, London, today saw more than 100 firefighters respond. Matt Wrack, FBU general secretary, said: “This fire is yet another sign of this government’s utter failure to get to grips with our fire safety crisis. Two years on from Grenfell, there has still been no comprehensive programme testing building materials. “The approach so far has been the agonisingly slow removal of one particular kind of cladding, but that barely scratches the surface. “The Tory manifesto made no new policy proposals to tackle the fire safety crisis – just more of the same indifferent […]
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