North Yorkshire Combined Fire Authority has today (13 December) voted unanimously to reverse cuts in the number of firefighters who crew Tactical Response Vehicles (TRVs), in a huge victory for the Fire Brigades Union (FBU).
The vote overturns a decision taken by the fire authority in December 2015 that just three firefighters were needed on the TRVs. Now, the fire authority has agreed to return to having a minimum of four firefighters on each vehicle.
Steve Howley, brigade secretary of the FBU in North Yorkshire, said: “I am very pleased the new chair of the fire authority, Andrew Backhouse, listened, considered and acted upon our concerns, as well as those of other authority members, that having just three firefighters on a vehicle was a threat to public safety and to the safety of our firefighters.
“This is a ground-breaking decision and one that clearly changes the direction of travel for this fire authority. It is an enormous accomplishment and has only been made possible as a result of the relentless campaigning by FBU members over the last few years. Together we have acted as a united and determined union who have refused to give up the fight on an issue which placed the public and firefighters of North Yorkshire at greater risk.”
“The authority also took the decision to provide the FBU with a seat on the authority. This position will allow for greater transparency, a balanced debate and the employees having equal input on important decisions at future meetings. This is something we are very pleased with and have been requesting for some time.”