The Isle of Wight Council’s Cabinet has this evening (Monday) rejected controversial plans to change how the Isle of Wight Fire and Rescue Service operates.
Following on from the Scrutiny Committee’s recommendation to reject the paper, the Cabinet has thrown out the proposal over a number of public safety concerns. 7 members voted to reject the paper, 1 did not and 1 abstained.
For now things will remain as they are, but it was proposed to have 3 fire engines ready to mobilise at 90 seconds notice in Ryde, Sandown and Newport for 12 hours a day. If the plans were given the green light tonight, the other 12 hours of the day would have been covered by 1 fire engine in Newport with retained crews providing additional cover.
One of the biggest proposed changes to cause concern has been the drop in the number of firefighters (or ‘riders’) on an appliance. Each fire engine currently has a crew of 5 but it was suggested that pumps would mobilise with a crew of just 4.
All 10 fire stations on the Island will remain open. An ‘alignment of resources’ will not go ahead until at least January 2019.