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Firefighters in Bradford out on strike
Firefighters are manning picket lines across Bradford in a walkout over pensions.
Under new Government proposals firefighters would work until the age of 60, rather than 50 as they currently do.
Members of the Fire Brigades Union (FBU) left their stations and set up picket lines, leaving brigades to put into place contingency plans.
The union is campaigning against the changes it says will also mean firefighters will have to work longer, pay more into their pensions and receive less in retirement.
Bradford FBU Divisional Secretary Lee Indriks said discussions with the Government had been ongoing for two years and strike action was really a last option.
“It really is mainly about the future safety of the public and firefighters. No-one would like or even contemplate a firefighter of 60 years of age trying to search a burning building for a family. It’s not ridiculous to imagine a firefighter of that age collapsing or event potentially dying in situations like that.”
The strike started at noon and lasts until 4pm.
Dave Walton, assistant chief officer for West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “We have an established contingency plan developed as part of our standard business continuity arrangements. This plan has recently been exercised and tested using a variety of scenarios and we are confident in our ability to provide fire cover, albeit on a restricted basis, to the communities and businesses of West Yorkshire.”