11 September 2019
North East Labour MSP Lewis Macdonald has highlighted the centralisation of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, after it became clear that the most senior officers in the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service will be deployed no further north than Dundee in the event of a major incident in Aberdeen or Aberdeenshire.
After raising the issue at Holyrood today, Lewis said:
“It is unacceptable that when major incidents occur in Aberdeen and the North East, the most senior fire officers are expected to direct operations from the incident support room, which is in Dundee. It seems that Scotland ends at Dundee as far as the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is concerned.
“The Justice Committee is this week highlighting its scrutiny of the legislation which created the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service, criticising centralisation – something which the SNP Government could have avoided when the Bill was going through parliament in 2012 if they had listened to the views of people in Grampian Fire and Rescue Service and elsewhere.
“Instead, we have the absurd situation where a major incident at St Fergus or on Royal Deeside or in Aberdeen would be managed from a control room in Dundee, instead of by a Gold Commander on the ground.
“SNP Ministers are ultimately responsible for how the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service operates, and they must make sure that it works for the whole of Scotland, not just the Central Belt.”