Latest figures released by Cleveland Fire Brigade have shown an 11% increase in anti-social behaviour incidents in Redcar and Cleveland.
The figures have been described as a “huge concern” by Labour’s Redcar Parliamentary candidate, Anna Turley.
“These latest figures paint a very bleak picture for our local fire services. More broadly, it shows that other agencies are struggling too – particularly the Police – as anti-social behaviour incidents are also on the rise.
“In Redcar and Cleveland we have seen ‘total deliberate fires’ increase by almost 90% and over 100% increase in deliberate secondary fires. This is a huge strain on the fire service and it is a huge concern that, as further cuts bite, Cleveland Fire Brigade will not be able to provide a level of safety and service that the community has become used to.
“The Lib Dem-Tory Coalition has imposed £4m of cumulative cuts on Cleveland, and is planning to impose a further £5.96m up to 2017/18. Whilst Cleveland is getting cuts in its Government funding, they have increased funding to fire brigades in the South: Essex and Devon and Somerset has had nearly a 4% increase and Kent nearly 3%.
“Cutting fire fighter numbers not only risks the Brigade’s ability to respond to emergencies, but also its ability to take proactive steps such as its community fire safety check scheme and its diversionary activities to reduce fire-related anti-social behaviour.
“Cleveland Fire Brigade provides an excellent public service but it is one that is now seriously under threat. It is a priority of mine to campaign for the future of our fire services.”