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Manchester - The Fire Service Response


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There's no doubt about it, the UK fire service must be prepared for acts of terrorism, the like of which are unprecedented.

Since 9/11, all 999 services have transformed the way they work beyond recognition from when I joined the fire service in the 70s. Millions of pounds have been spent on kit and training - some of it has been controversial.

But the new systems appear not to have worked that well during the Manchester attack. Press reports say that while other 999 service attended, the fire service held back for a considerable time. Ok, this is press speak - I totally understand that this source of information may not always be reliable. But there does seem to have been delays.

I also know how damn easy it is for me to sit and be an armchair critic. But questions do need to be answered. I am sure GMFRS will be reviewing the incident and I hope that any findings will be made public

I appreciate that some on this site may not be able to comment on this situation, but that should not stop others. Whether you like it or not, this is the future and you guys need to be protected by having terrorist related procedures that work as well as the new kit


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Remaining objective about the whole thing... why spend so long running the JESIP project to then not use it when it's needed most? Surely if we're jointly assessing risks and it's been decided the benefit outweighs the risk for the police and ambulance service to attend then it should follow that it's safe for the fire service no?

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Ok, I've read the same reports in the press and social media. Of course, there is loads of info we haven't been told, which is why we wonder about whats gone on.

My 1st question, the one i can't get my head around, is that why a FRS PDA wasn't turned out to the stadium when calls (multiple i guess?) must of been received to an explosion? Im bamboozled by this. I know 100% that if that if a report of an explosion at a public event was received in our Brigade area, the PDA would be sent without delay.

Now, if on arrival its found there is no established fire, and persons are not trapped, then we won't have primacy. But GMC firefighters would of surely been able to assist in trauma care and movement of those in need of help?

Of course, other agencies become predominant where its confirmed that a terrorist incident is underway, but its the initial moments that confuse me. How did fire control know this was a terrorist incident on receipt of the 1st calls? And as they can't of known, why didn't they turn out the PDA? (not at dig at control, clearly this wasn't the decision of an individual con op)

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Im not going to make too much of a comment on this and hopefully I won't feel the need to lock or pull it. All I will say is that there is a lot of anger amongst the troops because at this current time there are a lot of blanks in what has gone on etc. 

The first 2 calls that came in were from the Police and Ambulance and confirmed that a Bomb had gone off with further reports of a Lone Shooter. People who know me will know how and why I know this information.

As I say there are many blanks in what has and has not happened but one thing I can confirm is that what is being reported is far from what really happened on the night.

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