Staffordshire fire chief insists £4million cuts won’t hit safety

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The county’s fire chief has said safety will not be compromised as Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service begins to make £4million of cuts.

The service needs to make the savings by 2015 to meet budget targets.

Peter Dartford, Chief Fire Officer, revealed that two thirds of the cuts had already been identified.

Peter Dartford

Peter Dartford

“Following a review of our management structure we have taken the decision to move from nine area commands to three service delivery groups, covering the north, east and west of the county,” he explained. “We trialled the new structure in the north of the county for nine months before taking the decision to roll the new arrangements out countywide.

“The next steps for 2012 are to look at the support functions of the service to see where further savings can be identified.

 

“This year does pose significant challenges; however we are confident we can rise to them, whilst still ensuring there is no compromise to community safety or firefighter safety.”

Despite the cuts, the building programme to provide new fire stations is set to continue.

 

“Last year was an equally challenging yet productive year, which included the completion of our ten new community fire stations which are proving more successful than we could ever have anticipated,” said Mr Dartford.

“This year we expect to finalise the deal on our next community fire stations project which will see a further 11 stations built, with construction likely to start in the Autumn.

 

“So 2012 is set to be an exciting, interesting, yet challenging year, in which we will ensure the people of Staffordshire continue to receive the level of service they expect, in a more efficient and effective way.”

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