Fire control transfer ‘disastrous’
SIR, – I can only agree with Ms Pottinger’s sentiments (Letters, January 10) about the disastrous transfer of fire control from Inverness, above, to a central facility in Dundee.
I along with many others, both fire service personnel retired and serving and members of the public, made the point that what we are seeing now would inevitably come to pass.
Matthew Reiss’s suggestion of a Highland combined emergency service control facility in the area makes a lot of sense but will the Scottish Government see it that way?
Take note that in the media now, the facility in Dundee is no longer a command and control centre which is what we had in Inverness, but a “call centre”. Is this a prelude to “if your call relates to a bedroom fire, please press 1. If your call is to a kitchen fire, please press 2”?
Further the platitudes about efficient crews will help regarding local knowledge does not really wash, when for example Lairg get called to a fire in Skye. Crews being paged to a wrong location is disgraceful, and it is placing unnecessary stress on retained personnel.
Those that have experienced the initial tension or turmoil when your pager activates and you have to drop everything and proceed to your station without any idea what you are being turned out for until you read the printer in the station, will know well what I mean. You only then know whether it is going to be a simple chimney fire say, or a fatal incident possibly involving someone you may even know. Alastair Armitstead, Achiltibuie, Ross-shire