An independent report commissioned by the Government claims that fire services across the South could save millions of pounds of public money if they worked together more closely.
The review says calls-outs and fire deaths have dropped, while spending and the number of firefighters have stayed much the same. The report has been welcomed by fire chiefs in Hampshire and West Sussex.
But the Fire Brigades Union has called it a "fig leaf" to hide further cuts which could put lives at risk. Malcolm Shaw reports.
The West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service is dealing with a fire at a derelict warehouse in Sidlesham near Chichester.
The service was alerted to the blaze - just off the B2201 - just after midnight. Around Twenty-five firefighters are at the scene. The building contains used tyres, and is well alight.
A house fire in the Copthorne area of Crawley which killed two people is believed to have been started by cigarettes.
The fire early on Saturday Morning claimed the lives of an 83 year old woman and her 52 year old son.
Deputy Safer Communities Manager for West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service, Adrian Carter, said: "This is a tragic accident that has sadly taken the lives of two people from the same family but it highlights the real dangers that can be caused as a result of cigarettes and smoking.
"Smoking related fires are still the biggest killers in accidental fires in the home resulting in a third of all fire related deaths."
A second body has been found at the scene of a fire at West Sussex.
Emergency services had been called to the fire, at The Lodge, Great Finches Farm, Snow Hill, Copthorne, near the Dukes Head roundabout, at 12.45am on Saturday.
The building had been severely damaged by fire and the body of an elderly woman, believed to be an 83-year old occupant, was found inside.
Police scenes of crime officers and detectives, and fire service investigators, have been examining the scene since Saturday morning.
Fire damage made the structure very unsafe and great care has had to be taken to ensure a safe and thorough search can be carried out.
On Sunday afternoon a second body, believed to be that of the 52-year old man who was the only other occupant, was found in another part of the building.
Enquiries are continuing to establish the full circumstances and at this stage the deaths are being treated as unexplained.
We are in the process of tracing next of kin, and postmortems will be held on dates yet to be arranged during the coming week.
As investigations continue into a housefire in Sussex, police have confirmed that a second body has been found.
An elderly woman was discovered in the house in Copthorne on Saturday. Firefighters say they found the second body, believed to be a 52 year old male, yesterday.
Both deaths are being treated as unexplained.
An investigation is underway after a fire at a property at Copthorne near Crawley Down.
The Emergency services were called to the address at Snow Hill, along the A264 just after half past midnight. The roof had collapsed, and the building had been severely damaged by fire.
Around thirty firefighters from West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service tackled the flames at the height of the blaze.
Sussex Police said the body of an elderly woman believed to be an occupant was found inside the building, and that at this time her death was being treated as 'unexplained'.
Firefighters will return to the property to make sure there are no hot spots.
Firefighters remain at the scene of a blaze which destroyed the roof of a house in Copthorne near Crawley Down in Sussex. The body of an elderly woman was found at the property. Investigations continue.
An elderly woman has died in a fire at a property at Copthorne in West Sussex. Firefighters were called to Snow Hill along the A264 just after half past midnight. The road has been closed for much of the day.
More than thirty firefighters tackled the flames. The fire was out by 11.30am, but officers are still at the scene investigating the cause.
Eight people, including two children, were rescued by fire crews after a fire at a block of flats in Crawley. West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service was called to the flats on Broadfield Place just after 7.00am after a fire broke out in the communal stairwell of the three-storey block.
Two separate 999 calls were made by people trapped in their flats by the thick smoke filling the stairwell. Fire crews from Crawley were at the flats within minutes, followed by additional crews from Horley and Horsham.
The first firefighters on scene used triple extension ladders to rescue five people from the first floor windows, while a further three people were led to safety through the central stairwell. One man in his 20s was treated for mild smoke inhalation but did not go to hospital.
Investigations are underway at a block of flats in Crawley after people were trapped in their homes by flames earlier this morning.