Lancashire firefighters thanked for their efforts during the pandemic - here's some of the things they have done
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service has been praised for the part it has played in response to the pandemic - including the rollout of the county’s vaccination programme.
Lancashire county councillors have ordered that the authority writes to the chief fire officer in recognition of the “invaluable contribution” made by his colleagues.
A meeting of the full council heard that over 500 fire service personnel had volunteered to help with a range of duties including co-ordinating the distribution of PPE at the height of the first wave, when supplies were short, and carrying out welfare checks on the vulnerable.
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Staff are also currently working seven days a week at vaccination centres across the county, as both marshals and vaccinators. They have so far assisted in the distribution of 400,000 jabs, delivering 43,000 of them directly.
Proposing the motion of thanks, West Lancashire West county councillor David O’Toole - chair of the Lancashire Combined Fire Authority - said that the fire service had “played a central role” in Lancashire’s Covid response.
His predecessor, Preston Central East member Frank De Molfetta - who spent eight years in the role - added that the service was “expanding all the time to assist the people of Lancashire”.
The meeting heard the story of a Chorley-based firefighter who was set to retire after 28 years in early 2020 - but then put his plans on hold when the pandemic struck.
County Cllr Nikki Hennessy said that the unnamed officer had been delighted to assist in “a real team effort alongside the NHS”.
Recounting his own words, she said that he could “not think of a better way to see out my career”.
Meanwhile, Heysham county councillor Andrew Gardiner requested that special thanks also be extended to the firefighters who responded to the gas explosion at a house on Mallowdale Avenue in the town, in which two-year-old George Hinds was tragically killed back in May.