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New equipment is a breath of fresh air for fire crews


Gloucestershire firefighters will be able to breath easy with new state of the art equipment to help them stay safe when fighting fires.

In April last year, cabinet agreed to look for a new supplier of breathing apparatus for the county’s fire service to ensure that crews have the best possible tools when they’re risking their lives and saving others.

This followed updates being made to national guidance and the current equipment being at the end of its service life.

Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service (GFRS) went to tender to find new state of the art breathing apparatus, which could include extra functions like improved communications between incident commanders and extra monitoring software to safeguard firefighters in dark, smoke filled buildings.

To find the best possible equipment for crews, the fire service carried out trials of potential kit in training scenarios, carrying out tests with the county’s firefighters to gauge their feedback, as well as discussing with colleagues at other services that use the apparatus for their feedback.

The new breathing apparatus will be supplied by Interspiro and uses Bluetooth technology to improve communications between crews, as well as being around half the weight of previous sets.

Training with the new equipment is nearly complete and it is currently being rolled out around the county’s stations.

Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member for fire and infrastructure, said: “I am proud that we have one of the best and most efficient fire services in the country, and this is in no small part down to the excellent crews we have in Gloucestershire.

“It is important to make sure our firefighters have first class equipment at their disposal.

“This new equipment will help our crews to continue with their first class service and help keep themselves and members of the public safe.”

Stewart Edgar, Chief Fire Officer at Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “The new guidance has been developed to make sure our firefighters are as safe as they can be when keeping the people of Gloucestershire safe.

“With an increased focus on firefighter safety it is only right that we invest in new equipment and I’m delighted to have Interspiro on board.

“Their equipment stood up to rigorous testing and offers incredible advancements in technology at the same time as keeping our crews safe.”

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