Fire cuts

PUBLISHED: 10:48 29 October 2009 | UPDATED: 14:36 06 May 2010

SIR – Please add my congratulations to the firefighters who rescued an infant at a fire in Abbey Avenue on Friday October 16 (Herts Advertiser, October 22). The residents rely on their bravery and skill. Tony Morrison, Group Commander at St Albans, said

SIR - Please add my congratulations to the firefighters who rescued an infant at a fire in Abbey Avenue on Friday October 16 (Herts Advertiser, October 22).

The residents rely on their bravery and skill. Tony Morrison, Group Commander at St Albans, said "their [the crews'] prompt action undoubtedly saved the child's life". However, I agree with the correspondence from Mr Oakes-Monger in the same edition, where he points out that the front-line fire service has been cut and there are plans to cut it further whilst employing more "managers".

I suspect that not many Hertfordshire residents know that, under Herts Fire and Rescue rules, a fire crew is not permitted to enter a building to search for "missing persons" until two engines are on the scene. In St Albans, this is normally OK as the two St Albans' engines arrive together.

What about Borehamwood, Radlett and the surrounding areas?

This area is now only served by the one engine at Borehamwood. Would the second engine from Watford, Garston or St Albans arrive quickly enough to allow for the same prompt life saving action? I suspect not.

Also, I dread to think what the outcome would have been if one of the St Albans engines had been away in Borehamwood, as they frequently are, on the night of October 16.

GORDON PARSONS

Mornington Road, Radlett

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