herald

Wednesday 13 December 2017

Editorial: We must listen to fire crews

Fire crews at the scene of a major fire at the Oxigen recycle plant in Ballymount last year
Fire crews at the scene of a major fire at the Oxigen recycle plant in Ballymount last year

 The Dublin Fire Brigade (DFB) has a long and proud history of service in the capital.

Much of their work has nothing to do with fires – instead, they provide a vital ambulance service, attending road traffic incidents and other public emergencies.

Up until now the DFB has been responsible for dispatching most of the ambulances to ‘999’ calls in the city.

That’s set to change under new plans, which will see the HSE take over the running of the service. The Executive believes it can run the service for less money than it currently pays the DFB.

Firefighters are opposed to this and have rejected criticism of the service from the Health Information and Quality                 Authority.

Fire crews say they offer “excellent” value for money.

Most Dubliners would agree, and the HSE’s track record in running health services hardly engenders confidence.

Do the cost savings really merit this serious change?

A blinding winter for Dubliners

It may have felt like the coldest start to March in living memory, but Dubliners had some reason to be cheerful over the winter months.

It’s emerged that the past winter has been the sunniest on record in Dublin, with an average of 2.8 hours of sunshine every day during the recent months of December, January and February.

The sunshine totals represent the highest recorded amounts of winter sunshine in the capital since records began 73 years ago.

After all that bright winter weather we were probably due the blast of snow and ice we endured over the past few days.

All eyes will now look to the summer, of course. Can Dublin maintain its sunny record-beating weather? Here’s hoping.

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