herald

Wednesday 7 December 2016

Fire chief calls for rise in capital funding

EMERGENCY

Dublin Fire Brigade fighting a blaze at the scene of a large fire in Ballymount
Dublin Fire Brigade fighting a blaze at the scene of a large fire in Ballymount

More funding is needed for fire appliances and station facilities, according to the Chief Financial Officer of Dublin Fire Brigade.

Patrick Fleming has said it is "regrettable" that there has been no "fleet capital funding provided in recent years" and described fire appliances as the "work horses of the service".

"Current expenditure by Local Authorities on fire and rescue services is €267m per annum. However, all fire authorities are dependent on central Government for capital funding.

"Fire appliances and proper station facilities are essential for maintaining the delivery of a fire service," Mr Fleming said.

He is the chairperson of the Chief Fire Officers' Association and he made these remarks at their annual conference in Co Offaly yesterday.

"Capital funding of appliances and stations has a very positive return on investment within the construction industries. Despite the competing demands, I would encourage the Minister to provide adequate funding to support local fire service delivery," he added.

The Dublin fire chief also said he believes the Health Minister's recent remarks that the retained fire services could "play a significant part in pre-hospital emergency care" should be "explored further".

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