The staffing of the second fire engine at Rotherham fire station will change next month, as one of the final changes approved by councillors four years ago is implemented.
The second fire engine at the site on Fitzwilliam Road will remain permanently available in the day, but become ‘on call’ at night by the end of March.
The decision to make the change was approved by South Yorkshire Fire & Rescue’s governing Fire Authority in 2013.
It was reaffirmed in an efficiency plan approved by the Government last year, where the service outlined proposals to make more of its fire engines available in the daytime when firefighters are busiest responding to emergencies, carrying out safety work or training.
Deputy Chief Fire Officer Martin Blunden, said: “We have faced big cuts to our funding, but have repeatedly committed to providing the best possible service to the people of South Yorkshire within the resources which are available to us.
“This change is one of the last changes agreed four years ago. The second fire engine is not being taken away, but will become ‘on call’ at night and, as with all our fire stations, our 999 response service will continue to be supported by crews from other, nearby stations.
“We will soon be talking to the public about how we plan to deliver our services beyond 2017 and will look forward to listening to their views on how we plan to develop our work to keep people safe.”
The fire service has lost £14 million in its Government funding since 2010 and is likely to lose a further £2 million between now and 2020.
Changes to the second fire engines at Barnsley, Rotherham and Doncaster fire stations were approved in something called an Integrated Risk Management Plan (2013-17), following consultation with the public and other stakeholders.
A similar, draft plan for how the fire service will deliver its service to local people beyond 2017 will be considered by Fire Authority members in February before members of the public are invited to share their views.
The plans to be presented will not propose any further reductions in fire station or fire engine numbers, but will consider changes to the fire service’s work to prevent emergencies and a new legal duty to collaborate with the police and ambulance services. The fire service will also commit to using its existing resources as effectively and as efficiently as possible.