Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 29°C

min temp: 17°C

ESTD 1874 Search

Suffolk: Muted response to police boss’s single blue-light control scheme

08:00 15 April 2014

Tim Passmore, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner

Tim Passmore, Suffolk Police and Crime Commissioner

Archant

A concept by Suffolk’s Police and Crime Commissioner for a centralised ‘blue-light’ control room based in the county has been met with a muted response.

Tim Passmore has floated the idea of a single site for the despatching of fire, police and ambulance services.

Currently the ambulance control centre is based in Hellesdon, Norfolk, while the fire service’s 999 centre is located in Cambridgeshire.

Mr Passmore has said he is keen to look at any alternatives to relocating Suffolk Constabulary’s command and control room to Norfolk as part of a cost-cutting exercise.

However, in response to the possibility of there being a Suffolk-based emergency service control centre in the future, a spokeswoman for the ambulance service said: “The East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust already has very good control room arrangements in place that serve local communities well.

“Our staff work very hard to provide high quality services and advice to callers whilst an ambulance is on its way.

“The work of ambulance control staff is closely connected to many parts of the wider NHS, such as acute hospitals, and we are not part of any discussions about a single joint emergency control room in Suffolk.”

A spokesman for Suffolk County Council, in relation to the county’s fire service, said: “Our agreement with Cambridgeshire for the delivery of control services has a five-year term. The agreement has been in operation for just over three years and therefore has two remaining.

“However, the arrangements can be extended further, where desired. The current arrangements are operating successfully.”

Speaking at a meeting with Babergh residents at East Bergholt High School last Wednesday, Mr Passmore said: “I do think one of the alternatives I should be looking at is in two or three years if we don’t go ahead with the control room (merger) what about the linking of the blue lights services – ambulance, police, fire and coastguard – here in Suffolk?”

Douglas Paxton and Simon Bailey, chief constables of Suffolk and Norfolk respectively have put forward the business case for a combined control room, probably based in Wymondham. They estimate this would save £1.84million a year.

Due to their Government grants continually being slashed, Suffolk and Norfolk police need to find combined savings of £36.7m by March 2018. Suffolk’s shortfall is said to be £16.4m.

1 comment

  • Passmore seems to be ignoring the fact that ambulance dispatchers need a completely different skill-set to police or fire brigade dispatchers. Not only do the ambulance dispatchers need enough specialist medical knowledge to properly prioritise 999 calls, they also often need to talk callers through how to care for a casualty while the ambulance is on its way. Could be rather iffy when plod dispatchers pick up ambulance calls, to say the least.

    Report this comment

    beerlover

    Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

Stephen Cook of Churchgate Books

Have changing fashions doomed the traditional second-hand book shop, or has the rise of the internet just meant people have to move with the times?

Dalian Atkinson playing for Ipswich in 1988. (Photo by Bob Thomas/Getty Images)

An inquest is to be opened today into the death of ex-Ipswich Town footballer Dalian Atkinson after he was shot with a police Taser.

File picture of police car.

A motorcyclist has died after his bike was in a collision with a van in Witham yesterday afternoon.

Bacton Community Middle School development plans. Left to right, David Barker MBE, chairman of Westhorpe Parish Council, Phil Webb, chairman of Wyverstone Parish Council and chairman of Bacton Parish Council Richard Peaty.

Suffolk County Council has been accused of hypocrisy over the Olympic legacy – just days after it backed calls for people to get more active in the wake of the UK’s medal success.

Police crack down motoring offences on the A140 at Stonham Parva.

More than 60 Suffolk motorists are still driving despite having 12 points or more on their licence, according to DVLA figures

There will be no trains between Ipswich and Norwich over the bank holiday weekend.

There will be no trains between Ipswich and Norwich over the bank holiday weekend because Network Rail is replacing a bridge on the outskirts of Norwich.

Chelmsford Magistrates' Court

Two more people have been charged in connection with the murder of Michael Beckwith, from Harwich.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to the following newsletters:

MyDate24 MyPhotos24