Dorset Fire Fighters on Strike
7:38am 25th September 2013
Fire-fighters in Dorset won't be answering non-emergency calls from lunchtime today (Wednesday 25th September).
Up to 400 fire-fighters right across the county are expected to walk-out for 4 hours in a row over changes they say will see them working longer, paying more into their pension, but getting less back in retirement.
The Government wants them to work until they're 60 - but the Fire Brigades Union says in their line of work that's an unrealistic demand.
Dorset Fire and Rescue is urging us not to make unnecessary 999 calls while today's strike is taking place.
A spokesperson for the service has told Wessex FM there won't be picket lines at stations in Dorchester or Weymouth.
Darran Gunter, Chief Fire Officer said, they'll be answering emergency calls but is asking for the public’s cooperation;
"We are asking people to only call 999 if they really do need a fire engine. Our priority will be to respond to those priority calls where a life may be at risk or someone needs to be rescued. If we respond to non-emergency calls then those most in need could be at risk.
"A non-emergency call could be to someone who is locked outside their house or where debris has fallen in the road. There are other agencies and organisations that can help in this instance.
Darran added: "We do find ourselves in an unusual situation where we must prioritise our calls for those who are most in need of our assistance. However, I must emphasise that you should still call 999 in an emergency so that an experienced control room operator can deal with your situation. You must not try and call your local fire station directly."
For further information click here or for fire safety advice call 01305 252600.