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Padiham fire engine faces axe in £5m cuts
2:52pm Tuesday 8th October 2013 in News
PEOPLE had their say on plans to cut one of Padiham’s fire engines at a meeting at Padiham town hall.
Around 15 members of the public heard that response times would increase by nine seconds, taking it to seven minutes and 37 seconds if the cuts go ahead.
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service held the meeting after announcing plans to axe a number of fire engines, including one staffed by a retained crew at Padiham.
People were told that the response time across Lancashire was six minutes and 44 seconds, one of the quickest in England.
Area manager Chris Waters said £1million of cuts would affect response times by just 0.2 per cent.
One worried resident said the figures were out-of-date due to changes in the roads, adding: “It takes around five minutes longer to get from Burnley to Padiham.”
Mr Waters said: “When you look at options for reducing services and saving money, we have got to save £5million one way or the other.
“We are not saying these are positive options. These are the best we can put forward that will keep people as safe as possible.”
The meeting heard how one of the retained pumps at Padiham is only used 50 per cent of the time and scrapping it would save £79,000 a year.
Most of the estimated £1m savings would come from the scrapping of a full-time engine in Hyndburn, leaving it with two. The cuts are due to be considered by Lancashire Fire Authority later this year.
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