Fears for student safety have been raised after plans were announced to relocate the Clifford’s Street Fire Station out of the City Centre to Huntingdon.
The new location will decrease response time to areas around the City Centre with dense student populations, such as the Heslington Road and Tang Hall.
According to Graham Martin, a student who is leading a protest against the plans: “At the moment the Clifford’s Street Station is in an ideal location to get to places like the Hull road where a lot of students live.”
He continued: “Moving the Fire stations out to Huntingdon will make it difficult to get to students living in Fulford and on the other side of the river. 50 per cent of all engines will be coming from two miles further away than they presently are at Clifford’s street.”
Councillor James Alexander, Leader of City of York Council’s Labour Opposition Group, said: “It’s very unclear why this arrangement has been selected.”
He continued to say that he would “certainly raise the concern” that “the proposed changes could affect students living off campus”.
As well as the new Fire Station in Huntingdon, a second smaller station is to be built near the Barbican Centre at the bottom of the Heslington Road.
According to Steve Howley, York Branch Secretary of the Fire Brigades Union: “Regulations do not permit a fire crew to work on an incident at a domestic property until nine members of a fire crew are present.”
He continued: “The Barbican Fire station will only house one engine. One engine takes eight crew. Even though this engine will get to domestic incidents in two minutes, it will not be able to do anything until the second engine arrives from Huntingdon, which could take up to 20 minutes.”
Martin stated: “This is frivolous spending when they do not have the money to cover it. They should revamp the Clifford’s Street station instead.”