Posted: Tue 29th Aug 2023

North Wales Fire Service shake-up: Deeside hosts community engagement events today

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Tuesday, Aug 29th, 2023

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North Wales Fire and Rescue Authority is running a public consultation to gather feedback from those who live, work and travel in the region about the future of how it provides emergency cover services in North Wales.

Two events are taking place in Deeside today as part of the consultation process.
One key proposal under consideration could drastically alter the staffing setup at Deeside Fire Station, switching from full-time firefighters to on-call (Retained Duty System) coverage during night-time hours.

Currently, Retained Duty System (RDS) firefighters, who often have other full-time employment, are on-call to address emergencies.

Equipped with radio pagers, they rush to the fire station when summoned. Due to strict response time mandates, they must reside or work near their designated station. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The proposed changes also include transforming rural stations such as Corwen, Dolgellau, and Porthmadog into daytime staffed stations, which would lead to the reassignment of 28 full-time firefighter roles from Deeside and Rhyl, potentially resulting in job cuts.

Three main options are being discussed:

  1. Relocate 12 rural and 28 full-time firefighter posts from Rhyl and Deeside to the new day-staffed stations.
  2. Introduce three new day-staffed stations, with potential savings of £1.1 million towards the 2024/25 budget, estimated at £6 million. This would result in a reduction of 22 full-time firefighter roles.
  3. Align with Option 2 but with only two day-staffed stations, leading to the closure of 5 RDS fire stations and saving £2.4 million.

Jack Sargeant, the Member of Senedd for Alyn and Deeside, has expressed serious concerns about the proposed changes. In a letter addressed to the North Wales Fire and Rescue Service, he wrote: “I have reviewed the three options being consulted on and am deeply concerned about their potential impact on the Deeside site and the wider community. Such changes may even endanger lives.” He encouraged locals to actively participate in the consultation, emphasising the importance of the community’s voice in the decision-making process.

Community engagement events are taking place at Deeside Leisure Centre today, Tuesday 29, August – at 2pm and 7pm.

The consultation can be found here: ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

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