Northumberland prepares for FBU strike

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Northumberland Fire and Rescue Service is putting together final arrangements to ensure that it can provide an emergency response during industrial action by the Fire Brigades’ Union (FBU) tomorrow between noon and 4pm.

The service has been urging residents to check their smoke alarms and make special efforts to ensure that their homes are free from fire risks and hazards.

More than 2,000 businesses have been sent information from the fire and rescue service providing them with advice on the possible implications for businesses and their employees in Northumberland.

Northumberland County Council is stressing that while an emergency service will be available, it will not be business as usual.

People should be extra vigilant and should avoid making unnecessary 999 calls – particularly during periods of industrial action.

Alex Bennett, chief fire officer, said: “We have robust plans in place to deal with emergency calls during the industrial action tomorrow, but we are asking for help from the local community.

“Our priority will be to respond to those priority calls where a life may be at risk or someone needs to be rescued.

“If we respond to non-emergency calls then those most in need could be at risk.

“I must emphasise however that you should still call 999 in an emergency so that an experienced control room operator can deal with your situation.”

For further information and fire safety advice, visit the fire section of the county council website