Scottish Government funding to be used on training investment
19 October 2016
The funding will be used to improve training facilities on the Orkney and Shetland islands.
Local firefighters will continue to keep their communities safe thanks to new and improved training facilities secured through Scottish Government funding. The Scottish Fire and Rescue Service will receive £2 million overall with £1.2 million being used to improve training across the Orkney and Shetland islands. The funding will see a new hot fire training (or carbonaceous) unit built at Kirkwall airport and a replacement unit at Sumburgh airport in Shetland. A separate unit will also be built at both sites. This will assist firefighters in avoiding becoming entangled in wires while negotiating enclosed spaces in challenging conditions, such as fires. Kirkwall’s site will additionally benefit from support facilities including teaching rooms a canteen, offices and changing facilities. Local Senior Officer Fraser Burr said: “These units will be a huge boost to training our retained crews in the Orkney and Shetland islands. “The specialist carbonaceous units in particular are a realistic training scenario that allows our firefighters to deal with real fires occurring within buildings. These can be complex and require a professional approach to keep both them and the community safe. “Firefighters are trained to a very high standard and this investment will ensure this continues in state of the art facilities closer to home for these crews. “The additional funding will help keep the communities within the Orkney and Shetland Islands safe.” The total cost for the Orkney and Shetland Islands investment is around £1.2million and an extra £800,000 funding will allocated to general SFRS maintenance costs nationwide. Minister for Community Safety and Legal Affairs, Annabelle Ewing, said: "Firefighters play a vital role in protecting our communities, doing a remarkable job in often challenging circumstances. “I am delighted that we have been able support the SFRS to provide new and improved training facilities in Orkney and Shetland. "It's essential that SFRS continues to deliver the high standard of services required to keep Scotland safe and providing high-quality and consistent training facilities across the country is an essential part of that."