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Firefighters to become 'extra police'

On-call firefighters from Dartmouth, Newton Abbot and Totnes are to take part in a new national trial.

They're being trained as special constables so they can attend both fire and police incidents.

Police Commissioner Alison Hernandez believes it will speed-up response times and make better use of emergency service resources.

She said: "I'm incredibly pleased to be able to support this collaboration. 

"We don’t know what future funding will look like for any of our emergency services and working together on unique projects like this will improve the service both organisations can deliver to people in Devon."

Chief Inspector Tom Holmes, the Devon and Cornwall Police lead for emergency services collaboration said: "This project provides an excellent opportunity for both police and fire to add additional officers into our communities who will be able to approach every issue from two points of view.

"Importantly they will also be able to answer calls for service and maintain fire cover in some of our most isolated communities. 

"This is a national first the potential of which both services share a huge excitement about."

Group Manager Jeff Harding, of Devon and Somerset Fire & Rescue Service, said: "We're really pleased to take part in this initiative as it supports on-call firefighters in areas where we have recruitment challenges. 

"The service provided to people living in these towns will be enhanced as the community responders will be able to provide visibility and advice to the public across both roles."

Click play to hear Devon & Cornwall Police Commissioner Alison Hernandez

 

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