Firefighters to go on strike for four hours in row over pensions

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FIREFIGHTERS will go on strike next week in a row over pensions.

The Fire Brigades’ Union (FBU) has announced that members will take part in industrial action for four hours, from noon-4pm on Wednesday, September 25.

Should the strike go ahead before any agreement between the union and the Government, it will be the first national firefighters’ strike for more than a decade.

Fire chiefs in Hartlepool and East Durham, via the Cleveland and Durham and Darlington fire services, have assured contingency plans are in place.

Cleveland’s chief fire officer Ian Hayton sparked controversy in July when he called for members of the public to come forward to be potential lifesavers and be trained to man engines.

But he said they would only be fighting fires from outside buildings, along with professional firefighters not taking part in any strike.

Almost 80 per cent of union members voted in favour of industrial action in a ballot that ended earlier this month.

Fire chiefs say they are also raising awareness of fire safety in the lead-up to any industrial action.