Firefighters walking out on strike is always likely to cause concern to members of the public.
If the worst happens and you have to dial 999 most of us are confident that the fire crew arriving at the scene of the incident will be highly trained, brave and fit enough to perform any task asked of them to help the situation.
At the heart of the current dispute is the firefighters’ wish that every member of their crew is capable of doing the job.
They say that being effectively forced to work until they’re 60-years-old will lessen the quality of the service they provide.
On the other side of the argument is that hardly any sector of society is escaping the economic conditions. People are being asked to work harder, for longer with regular wage rises a hope rather than an expectation.
People will naturally have sympathy for the firefighters position, but for how much longer?
Figures released today about response times during the firefighters strike will be a source of worry to the general public.
Neither side in this dispute wants it to continue for a minute longer, yet neither wants to back down either. But when it comes to matters of public safety then something has to give. And give soon.