Residents rally against proposed changes to nighttime cover at Deeside Fire Station
Concerned residents gathered in protest outside Deeside Fire Station on Saturday, voicing their fears over a potential major change that could critically impact the fire services night response times.
The North Wales Fire and Rescue Authority has been holding a public consultation, seeking views on the future of emergency coverage across the region.
Central to the proposed modifications is the possible transition of Deeside Fire Station’s nighttime staffing from full-time firefighters to the Retained Duty System (RDS) format.
In this system, firefighters, who may have other primary jobs, remain on-call to respond to emergencies.
These on-call firefighters, equipped with radio pagers, must reside or work near their station to ensure prompt response due to strict time mandates.
The broader proposed overhaul also encompasses rural stations like Corwen, Dolgellau, and Porthmadog, which could be remodelled into daytime staffed stations.
Such a move could result in the reassignment of 28 full-time firefighter roles, predominantly from Deeside and Rhyl, hinting at possible job cuts.
Opponents of the proposal highlight potential adverse consequences on emergency response times.
Amid a chorus of supporting car horns, Firefighter Andy Goodby expressed concerns about potential job and station cuts aimed at providing an equitable fire service across North Wales.
The local residents of Deeside, led by Mell Dudley who organised the protest, have taken a stand against such cuts and proposals.
In a video posted on X (formerly Twitter), Mell recalled how Deeside crews promptly attended an incident at her son’s flat, highlighting the critical need for timely emergency responses.
Andy thanked the local residents who turned out in the Welsh weather with their signs in a bid to save Deeside Fire Station, its shift systems, and the staff that currently work there.
The Fire Authority should take heed at the strength of public opinion.On a sodden Sat’day,unprompted,Deeside residents are performing their own protest.Why should residents accept a 2nd class,part time fire service?
FA-think very carefully!Cuts cost lives @fbunational pic.twitter.com/laSgZmlyGQ
— Save Our Fire and Rescue Service (@FBUNorthWales) October 1, 2023
Speaking to Deeside.com, Mell expressed her gratitude to all who braved the bad weather to show their support, including local MP Mark Tami and councillors that attended.
Mell gave a special mentions to the “kind lady who dropped off pizza to warm the protesters.”
The protest made a significant impact, raising awareness about the potential loss of the local fire service.
As the consultation closed on Saturday, the community’s united stand against the proposed changes at Deeside Fire Station sends a clear message of their commitment to ensuring the safety and security of their locality, highlighting the essential role of timely and efficient emergency response services. Spotted something? Got a story? Send a Facebook Message | A direct message on Twitter | Email: News@Deeside.com