Fire brigades in the region are training members of the public to cover fire fighters in case a national strike goes ahead.
Some of those who have volunteered are having intensive training this week, with hundreds having applied for the positions in Middlesbrough.
Members of the Fire Brigade Union have voted in favour of a strike in a row with the government over their pensions.
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A former Premier League footballer has been cleared of raping a woman he met in a nightclub.
72-year-old Arthur Bierton from Thirsk was convicted at Teesside Crown Court of abusing two young girls in the 1980s and 90s.