Essex fire chief suspended for internal investigation

Essex chief fire officer David Johnson.

Essex chief fire officer David Johnson. - Credit: Archant

The head of Essex fire brigade has been suspended pending an internal investigation.

Chief Fire Officer David Johnson has been on long-term sick leave from Essex County Fire and Rescue Service (ECFRS) since June last year.

It followed an earlier period of sick leave in 2014.

However Essex Fire Authority has now confirmed Mr Johnson is now facing a probe.

In a statement Tony Hedley, chairman of the fire authority, said: “Chief Fire Officer David Johnson has been suspended pending an internal investigation.

“At this stage, I can offer no further comment to allow due process to take place.

“It should be remembered that suspension is a neutral act.”

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No comment has been made either by the fire service or authority for the grounds of the suspension or the nature of the probe.

Acting Chief Fire Officer Adam Eckley will continue to lead the brigade while the investigation is carried out.

Mr Johnson was made chief of ECFRS in 2005.