Coronavirus: "We can cope" say Northamptonshire's emergency services as pandemic spreads

Police and Fire chiefs issue "business as usual" message to reassure public

Wednesday, 18th March 2020, 3:39 pm
Updated Wednesday, 18th March 2020, 3:40 pm

Northamptonshire's police and fire chiefs have issued a "business as usual" message over fears the coronavirus pandemic could hit emergency services.

Chief Constable Nick Adderley and Chief Fire Officer Darren Dovey appeared in a video alongside Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold.

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And Mr Adderley admitted he has been swamped with enquiries from people fearing the spread of the Covid-19 bug — which has officially infected more than 2,600 people nationwide as of today (Wednesday March 18) — will leave police and fire services short-handed.

But he said: "The public have contacting both myself and the commissioner in droves everyday asking what it is the situation regarding this emergency service.

"We would like to reassure you that Northamptonshire Police is out there still fighting crime and protecting people and we have the resources to be able to do the things we continually want to do and are doing. If that changes, we will update you."

Voice, which offers free and confidential support to victims and witnesses of crime in Northamptonshire , has switched to phone calls rather than face-to-face conversations to allow its staff and volunteers to continue providing support while following Government advice on social distancing.

Chief Constable Nick Adderley says Northamptonshire Police is coping with the coronavirus crisis

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue currently has around 470 staff spread around 22 stations in the county.

Mr Dovey said: "As a service we have put in place plans to make sure we can continue to respond respond to emergencies and keep people safe across the county.

"Our priority is to continue to take take 999 calls and respond to emergencies whether they be fires or road traffic collisions across the county.

"We have cancelled some non-essential activities to stop spread of virus and ensure we keep our own staff and public safe but please be assured if you have an emergency then dial 999 in the normal way and you will receive a normal response."

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue has around 470 staff