Fire stations of the world: England’s Walsall Fire Station serving the community
The Walsall Fire Station is a West Midlands Fire Service community fire station in the heart of Walsall, England. West Midlands Fire Service (WMFS) is the fire and rescue service for the metropolitan county of West Midlands, England. The service is the second largest in England, after London Fire Brigade. The service has 38 fire stations with a blended fleet of vehicles and specialist resources. The service is currently led by Chief Fire Officer Phil Loach, who is overseen by the West Midlands Fire Authority. The Fire Authority is made up of 15 councillors who represent the seven councils within the West Midlands area. The service was created in 1974 when the West Midlands county came into being. Prior to its creation, each of the county boroughs in the West Midlands area ie Birmingham, Coventry, Dudley, Solihull, Walsall, Warley, West Bromwich and Wolverhampton, had their own fire brigade. Walsall Fire Station is situated at Blue Lane West in Walsall and houses two ‘pump rescue ladders and a hydraulic platform.
Walsall is a 13th Century market town and administrative centre in the county of West Midlands, England. Historically part of Staffordshire, it is located 13km north-west of Birmingham, 10km east of Wolverhampton and 14km from Lichfield.
Walsall is the administrative centre of the wider Metropolitan Borough of Walsall. At the 2011 census, the town's built-up area had a population of 67 594. Walsall has had many industries, from coal mining to metal working. In the late 19th Century, the coal mines ran dry and Walsall became internationally famous for its leather trade. It is also the traditional home of the English saddle manufacturing industry.
The West Midlands Fire Service’s headquarters is located in Nechells in Birmingham, which is also the home to Staffordshire and West Midlands Fire Control. The control room, based at West Midlands Fire Service headquarters is the main incident management and mobilising centre for both West Midlands Fire Service and Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service. The service divides its main functions into three areas: response, prevention and protection.
Response covers responding to emergencies, risk-based attendance standards, dynamic mobilising and fire control. Prevention covers their up-stream fire fighting work that includes safe and well visits, community engagement, vulnerable persons officers and other individual and home-based fire prevention work. Protection covers their work around commercial and business fire safety, licensing and safety around buildings such as high-rise and apartment blocks.
West Midlands Fire Service has no retained on-call fire fighters. All fire stations within the service are full-time and work on two types of shift:
CORE: covered by four watches, comprising Red, White, Blue and Green: 10-hour day-shift or 14-hour shift-night shift.
LATE: covered by two Watches of Orange and Purple: 12-hour shift running from 10h00am to 22h00.
Sources: West Midlands Fire Service, Walsall Fire Station Facebook and Twitter pages