Working for Your Safety.
Monday 17th February 2014 @ 09:00 by Anna Fletcher


Local councillors came together at Ashton Community fire Station as part of the local authorities councillor development training.

The objective of the day was to give councillors a better understanding of the work the fire service is involved in as well as provide an overview of how the fire service and the council can and do work together in partnership.

This is the second of this kind of event with the last one being a real success.

Borough Manager for Tameside Jon Heydon, said: “We’ve had to do things slightly differently over the last few years in the present economic climate so this is a great opportunity for us to do things differently.

“Our protection officers are now working within the council, fire safety protection officers are working with the enforcement officers from the local authority so that businesses as they come into Tameside have got a one stop shop, they can get all the advice they need under that one roof. The aim is to build on that model and work even closer together in the future.”

Councillors were split into two groups and listened to presentations on prevention and local authority collaboration with the Fire Service followed by a demonstration of firefighting skills, including from the new Technical Response Unit.

Over the last 12 months two specialist appliance crews have been trained, one based in Ashton and the other in Leigh, with an opportunity for them to supplement the great work the response team do with a greater range of equipment.

Jon continues: “Over the last five years we have seen a real drop in the number of fires we attend and the severity of those fires, but what we have seen is a rise in the number of road traffic collisions we attend.”

More recently the Technical Response Unit was called to Hattersley where a man had climbed up the front of Tameside Court and got stuck at the 11th floor. The Hyde emergency team stabilised the situation and the TRU was called in to perform the rescue.

The council and the fire service are hoping that by working together they will be able to make Tameside a safer place. Over the last 10 years fires have reduced by 40% in Tameside.

Cllr John Bell, Deputy Chairman of the Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority, said: “I’m very proud that, being a Tameside councillor and a member of GMFRA for 15 years, that we are working together and I want to see this rolled out throughout Greater Manchester.

“It really is improving the service, improving the way we do things together and hopefully improving the community safety of Tameside.”