Firefighter strike went ahead as floods hit the county

4:06pm Wednesday 25th December 2013

By Robert Rowlands

A FIREFIGHTER strike went ahead last night as floods hit the county.

The fire and rescue service was striking over plans to raise the retirement age from 55 to 60.

On the night of the latest round of industrial action, several calls were made that required emergency services to attend.

Ten of the county's fire engines were unavailable, but firefighters, who had agreed to attend emergency incidents during the strike, did go to several call-outs.

Teams were called out to deal with flooding that was affecting or threatening properties in Bicester, Witney, Stadhampton, Weston on the Green and Deddington.

 

 

In addition, three fire engines attended a living room fire in a house at Beech Lane, Woodcote at 6.40pm, just before the strike began at 7pm.

Two fire engines from Bicester and one from Thame attended a collision in Arncott at 8.55pm in which  two people had been trapped.

Just after 10pm, three fire engines attended a house fire in Elizabeth Road in Henley.

Then, at 10.55pm, two fire engines from Thame and one from Watlington attended a three-vehicle collision at junction 6/7 of the M40.

One vehicle ended up on the embankment.

One vehicle did catch fire, but the people in the vehicles had escaped before the firefighters arrived.

Matt Wrack, Fire Brigades Union General Secretary, said last night: “Firefighters provide this service 365 days a year, every year of their careers, and I hope that when the dust settles tonight we can re-engage with Government and through discussion agree a pension scheme that reflects the difficult work that they do. We should not be put in this position again.”

 

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