Yesterday when dealing with the Grenfell Tower inferno, our fire fighters were epic. The courage shown by the firemen as without hesitation they laid their lives on the line by charging into the burning building to save the terrified victims was on par with the heroism shown by the firemen of 9/11. These men are legends. No words can convey high enough praise for their guts and dedication.
When I attended Mayor’s Question Time every month, I learnt fires are now down a massive 60% over ten years and this has to be good news. Furniture is now non flammable. We have central heating and efficient fire alarms. Even inventions like oven chips play their part in reducing fires. That is why 20% of fire stations have been closed. No fire fighter was made redundant. They were all offered either voluntary redundancy or transfers to other stations.
Some fire engines were only being used 16% of the time, but costs remained the same. We had 112 fire stations and Mayor Boris Johnson closed 10. Safety was checked to the utmost extent with fire chief Ron Dobson, who agreed every single cut.
There were 250 fire fighters available to tackle the horrendous tragedy of Grenfell Tower. This was an appalling one off and must never happen again.
My not so glamorous trade also died, (nobody knits anymore) but times move on, and other opportunities open up. The fact that we need fewer fire fighters is good news for safety, but the unforgettable sight of the fire fighting performance yesterday is something we will never forget. Similar courage was shown by our police, who tackled terrorists only with batons.
“If you go, we go!” Medals should be handed out to the entire fire fighting force for what they did for us yesterday.
NB. Water cannon are retro fitted with jet packs to fight high rise fires. High velocity jets give them a huge advantage over hoses, make them ideally suited for fighting high rise fires.
David Cameron authorised the water cannon “as a matter of principle”. He said “The police must have the equipment they need.”
In Epsom, water cannon used because it was “a pretty big fire!” This month!