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Cornish 999 Calls To Be Answered in North Yorkshire
7:02am 13th March 2014
999 calls to Cornwall's fire and rescue crews could end up being answered more than 400 miles away.
The council has approved a plan to share resources with north Yorkshire.
Each would keep its own control centre but share calls when it is busy.
Officials insist it will speed up response times.
Under the new arrangements, Cornwall’s control room will be able to "seamlessly" receive calls and dispatch resources on behalf North Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service during busy periods and vice vera.
Cornwall Council admits that callers can not always get through to the control room immediately when they dial 999 during bad weather.
It says the geographical distance means it is unlikely that both areas would be hit by storms or snow at the same time.
It is the first time such a scheme has been tried in the UK.
Despite meaning a reduction in the number of overnight control staff on duty, Cornwall Council insists it does not mean levels of cover will be cut, with staff redeployed elsewhere.
Both fire authorities will get a government grant to cover the cost of putting in a single system.
Cornwall Council cabinet member for homes and communities Geoff Brown said; “This project will provide a better service to people calling for the fire and rescue service in each area and will save taxpayers money.
“It will ensure the future of a Control Room in Cornwall providing the best service for the public.”7:02am 13th March 2014
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