Fire Brigade take engines from Poplar and Whitechapel for strike standby

PUBLISHED: 17:26 13 October 2010 | UPDATED: 12:05 15 October 2010

Whitechapel fire-station

Whitechapel fire-station

Carmen Valino

ONE of Whitechapel fire station’s two fire engines has been withdrawn as London Fire Brigade prepares for the introduction of a contingency fire service should the Fire Brigades Union take strike action.

Fire Brigades Union members in the London Fire Brigade are currently being balloted on strike action in a dispute over proposed changes to start and finish times for station-based staff and the engines at the stations in Commercial Road and East India Dock Road are two of 27 which have been withdrawn for a contractor to use if strike action goes ahead.

London Fire Commissioner Ron Dobson said: “This is not a decision that has been taken lightly and even at this late stage I am urging firefighters to consider the effects strike action might have. London’s fire authority has a legal duty to provide a fire and rescue service at all times, including during a strike we are no longer able to turn to the military as we did during the last strike in 2002/3.”

He stressed that it is still business as usual despite thefire engines being removed from duty as fire engines are used each and every day for training purposes while others are taken out of service to undergo maintenance.

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