New fears for Balmossie

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FEARS have been raised that Balmossie Fire Station’s full-time overnight crew may not survive as Scotland moves to a single fire service.

The station between Monifieth and Broughty Ferry had been part of a previous plan to downgrade night time cover from full-time to part-time.

The move would have then allowed the station in Forfar to be upgraded to full-time status.

However, these plans were rejected by the Tayside Fire and Rescue Board despite Balmossie being the region’s quietest full-time station.

But new figures released by Tayside Fire and Rescue show that between April, 2011, and March, 2012, Balmossie crews were only called out to 22 primary fires between 6 p.m. and 8 a.m.

This consisted of 15 call-outs to domestic properties, four to non-domestic buildings, two for vehicle fires and one other incident.

And David Fairweather, a councillor who serves on the Tayside Fire and Rescue Board, says he does not believe the station will be able to sustain an overnight crew.

He said: “I fear for Balmossie now a single fire force for Scotland is coming in.

“The fire board took some stick from the Accounts Commission on this and I always felt the fire master was making the right decision with a retained crew for Balmossie and moving resources to Forfar which is a busier station.

“I think the issue will now be revisited in the future and Balmossie might not lose evening cover but close completely.

“We have to think about delivering the best value for money.”

The convener of the fire board, Perth councillor Bob Band, agreed to an extent with Mr Fairweather.

He believes a single fire service for Scotland brings a new situation meaning the Balmossie decision to keep full time night cover will be reviewed at some point in the near future.