Malmesbury and Cricklade fire crews in action during firefighters' strikes

A FIRE CREW from Cricklade was called out to a blaze at Purton on Friday as Fire Brigades Union staged the first of two walkouts in their dispute with the Government over pension changes..

Firefighters from Malmesbury were also sent to Pewsey the following night to help deal with a major fire at a thatched house.

An elderly man was helped from the property in Reids Piece on Friday and treated for smoke inhalation by paramedics following a small fire.

Control room firefighter Chris Lee stayed on the phone and talked a neighbour through persuading the victim to leave.

On Saturday half of the 16 available fire appliances, including crews from Malmesbury and Wootton Bassett, were sent to the thatched roof blaze in Fyfield, while the rest were moved around the county and extras brought in from Dorset and Hampshire to maintain cover during the second four-hour walkout.

Area manager Julian Parsons said: “The industrial action by members of the Fire Brigades’ Union had an impact on where the supporting appliances came from. But the initial attendance was close to what we would normally expect, with the crew from Marlborough being on scene within 14 minutes of the 999 call being received – our response target for such a remote location is 20 minutes.”

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