Emergency cover keeps Surbiton fire station open as 70% of Londoners vote against frontline cuts

Lives were at risk when Surbiton Fire Station was one of only nine of London’s stations to be able to stay open with the help of emergency cover last weekend, claimed Kingston Green Party.

London Fire Brigade revealed on Wednesday that 70% of Londoner’s are against Mayor Boris Johnson’s plans to axe 13 fire engines.

Results from a public consultation on how to make £13.2 million worth of cuts to London’s fire and rescue service were published this week by London Fire Brigade.

Less than one in five Londoners thought the fire engines should be scrapped, most respondents thought the cuts should be made in back office spending and alternate crews on specialist engines as per Labour’s suggestion, while one in ten said no cuts should be made on either proposal.

Paul Embery, Fire Brigades Union (FBU) regional secretary for London, said: “This consultation shows that the public acknowledge the dangers to life that will be posed by cutting appliances in our capital so severely.

“No-one wants this, and the LFB Commissioner has to now accept that public opinion does matter.  Boris Johnson’s awful, unpopular idea to save money isn’t a good one.  Lives and safety have to come first.”

Kingston Greens say that fire and rescue service funding was cut by 30% over the last parliament as more than 7,000 jobs have been lost nationally.

They also emergency response times for fire engines has rise in more than 400 of the 654 London wards, putting lives and businesses in Surbiton at risk, especially as the area is prone to flooding.

The Green Party of Kingston and Surbiton is calling on James Berry MP, Tony Arbour AM and local Councillors to oppose and roll back cuts to this vital service.

Picture courtesy of Martin Addison, with thanks

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