DERBYSHIRE: Firefighters set to strike again

Firefighters ' including those in Chesterfield ' went on strike in a row over pensions last month and are set to do the same on October 19.
Firefighters ' including those in Chesterfield ' went on strike in a row over pensions last month and are set to do the same on October 19.

Firefighters across Derbyshire are set to strike for the second time in the space of a month.

Crews will walk out again between 6.30pm and 11.30pm on Saturday, October 19 in a bitter row over pensions.

They previously downed tools for four hours at the end of September.

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service (DFRS) is urging communities to take “extra care” in a bid to prevent any emergencies.

DFRS spokesman Bryan Bennett said: “As demonstrated during the industrial action which took place in September, we will still be responding to 999 calls albeit at a reduced level.

“Once again we are asking members of the public to take extra steps to reduce the risk of a fire breaking out in their home and to take extra care when driving on the roads during this time.

“I would urge everyone to visit www.derbys-fire.gov.uk where there is a wealth of fire safety advice and information available.”

Firefighters only had to deal with three emergency calls – including a skip blaze – during last month’s strike.

The Government plans to make firefighters work up to 60 and argues that the pension offer is generous. But the Fire Brigades’ Union claims many firefighters will not be able to maintain fitness standards into their late 50s and this will endanger the public.

The news comes ahead of more possible strikes by teachers and postal workers.

Teachers are angry about changes to their pensions, increased workloads and Government plans to bring in performance-related pay.

Members of the National Union of Teachers (NUT) and the NASUWT in Derbyshire walked out at the start of the month and may down tools again before Christmas.

And postal workers at Royal Mail are set to vote for strike action next month at the newly-privatised service.