As Chair of the Goole and Howdenshire Local Action Team (LAT) I was invited to spend a few of hours with Humberside Fire and Rescue as part of their peer review, looking at how they performed over the past year. It was interesting to be part of group of 15 people from different backgrounds and services giving our experiences of the service.
As a local Councillor who works very closely with the Fire Service it was very easy to be complimentary to them, particularly in how they are proactive when it comes to partnership working, how very well they work in communities, and how they are perceived as positive role models.
But to inject a touch of balance I was quite comfortable in mentioning the impact of the reduction in capability of Goole Fire Station from two full time fire crews, down to one full time and one part time (retained) crew, and not forgetting the purchase of the massive Combined Ariel Rescue Platforms (CARPs) which have had problems with just getting them on the road, never mind them being of such a size to make travelling down narrow streets very difficult, if not impossible.
All in all a great service, some great fire officers, but problems in the strategic direction - but acknowledging much of this is the fault of Central Government.
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