Budleigh Salterton fire station will permanently close in a week’s time, the fire service has announced today (Friday).
Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service (DSFRS) said the town’s station will close for good on Friday, April 3, with ‘most’ of the crew transferring to Exmouth, a ten-minute drive away.
The fire service said it would be contacting people living near the redundant station to explain how they will be covered when the Budleigh Salterton crew responds from Exmouth.
DSRFS is inviting anyone with concerns about the move to get in touch.
A fire service spokesperson said: “We appreciate that losing a fire station will also be a significant change for the community so we will be getting in touch with people who live near the fire station to understand their concerns and explain how we will be serving them in the future from Exmouth fire station.
“We had planned to hold drop-in events which have now been cancelled due to the coronavirus but are looking at alternative ways to link up with residents in the area.”
The fire service said closing Budleigh fire station would boost crew availability when responding to call-outs.
In February the fire service said the Budleigh crew would help keep the Exmouth retained pump fully-operational, and have its own fire engine ‘removed’.
Under current actions, both the Exmouth and Budleigh Salterton on-call fire engines were unavailable at times due to a lack of crew, said DSFRS.
DSFRS said fire engines based at Exmouth could reach incidents in Budleigh Salterton within 10 minutes.
Pete Bond, DSFRS assistant chief fire officer, and director of service improvement, said: “These changes are part of a larger service change programme which will enable us to move our resources to the areas where they are most needed.
“We recognise that people living in Budleigh Salterton may be concerned and we want to be clear that they will continue to receive a response from fire crews in the unlikely event that they need one.”
DSFRS said the Fire Authority’s decision to close the station, after the fire service held a cost-cutting consultation, would result in additional on-call firefighters responding from Exmouth during the daytime.
If you have any questions or concerns about the closure of Budleigh fire station, email firstname.lastname@example.org