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Fire Services: Industrial Disputes

Volume 497: debated on Tuesday 13 October 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether the training facilities at the Fire Service College will be made available to train private sector contractors who would provide contingency fire cover in the event of industrial action by fire brigades. (291068)

[holding answer 14 September 2009]: The Fire Service College provides training and training facilities, on a commercial basis, for fire and rescue services, the wider public sector and the private sector.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what contingency fire cover arrangements, other than the use of retained fire fighters, there are in the event of a (a) local and (b) national firefighters’ strike. (291115)

[holding answer 14 September 2009]: The provision of emergency fire cover during local and national strikes is the statutory responsibility of fire and rescue authorities. Past experience has shown that fire and rescue authorities utilise a range of personnel to provide emergency fire cover, including officers and whole time duty system firefighters who are not in the union which is in dispute. In London, the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority has entered into a contract with AssetCo plc, for the provision of an Emergency Fire Crew Capability Service to the London Fire Brigade.