Job cuts at WM Fire Service

West Midlands Fire & Rescue Service has announced more than 30 job cuts and the decommissioning of four fire engines because of budget cutbacks.

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Fire service demonstrate fire engine replacements

The new Brigade Response Vehicle which are in replace of four fire engines Credit: ITV Central

West Midlands Fire Service has been demonstrating the new smaller vehicles it plans to replace four fire engines with.

It's been confirmed by the service that 34 firefighter posts are being cut, and four fire engines are being taken off the road.

Equipment including cutting gear inside the BRV Credit: ITV Central

In their place will be smaller Brigade Response Vehicles (BRVs). Eighteen posts are being cut in Coventry, and 16 firefighter roles will go in Birmingham.

The service says it will not make anyone redundant, but positions will not be filled when people leave.

Hose reels and pumps at the back of the BRV Credit: ITV Central
The new vehicles are being introduced to cut costs Credit: ITV Central

FBU statement on possible fire service job cuts

Speaking about claims the West Midlands Fire Service are cutting firefighter jobs and taking fire engines off the road, Paul Cockburn, FBU brigade secretary said:

"The public rightly expect an efficient and effective fire and rescue service to be able to deal with a multitude of emergencies.

"The West Midlands fire service have committed themselves to keep the current 38 fire stations open. The public may be relieved to hear that and reassured when they see the lights still on. But they must be made aware that behind the fire station doors, the service they receive is changing: fewer traditional fire engines, more small fire units with limited capacity, fewer firefighters, less capacity to cope with large incidents and less resilience."

"It is clear to the FBU that there is less and less scope with each passing day to make further cuts to the service. Any future reductions to funding, when added to those already identified, will mean a drastically different service for the West Midlands' public."

– Paul Cockburn, FBU brigade secretary


More detail from the FBU on claims of fire service cuts

The Fire Brigades Union is claiming job cuts will be made in Coventry and Birmingham.

It says 18 posts will be made redundant in Coventry, with two traditional fire engines being taken off the road and replaced by one smaller vehicle.

A further 16 firefighters will lose their jobs at stations in Birmingham, with another two fire engines decommissioned, also to be replaced with smaller fire vehicles.

A statement from West Midlands Fire Service is expected at some time this morning.

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