GLOUCESTERSHIRE Fire and Rescue Service has the 10th slowest average response time in the UK, according to latest figures.

The data, analysed by looked at the total firefighter response times in each area of the UK for the quarter ending in September 2023 using data from the Home Office. 

It assessed the average of the call handling times, crew turnout times, and drive times for all types of fires, which gave them the final ranking.

In Gloucestershire the average response time was 11.04 minutes while the best was 6.53 minutes in Tyne and Wear. 

A spokesman for said:  “While we don’t doubt the selflessness and hard work of firefighters across the UK, the response times could be attributed to a lack of fire departments, equipment, and possibly staff shortages.”

“It’s fascinating to see which areas of the UK have the fastest firefighter response times, as it’s certainly reassuring for residents to know that they’ll receive help quickly in an emergency. 

Mark Preece, Chief Fire Officer at Gloucestershire Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Our priority is to keep communities in Gloucestershire safe, however we acknowledge that our response times to incidents were not as fast as some other fire and rescue services in 2022/23.

Our performance is good in maintaining low levels of casualties and fatalities resulting from fire incidents, and response times have improved in the first three quarters of 2023/24 to within target times. We are constantly keeping these under review with a view to seeing them improve further.

“To help us achieve this we are proposing to create 14 new firefighter posts to change Cinderford from being a solely On-Call crew, to being a Wholetime Day Duty Community Fire Station with On-Call staff crewing the station at night.

This will improve the response times of crews in the Forest of Dean area and ultimately lead to an improvement of our overall Service response times.

“Our overall On-Call availability is good in comparison to our neighbouring fire and rescue services and we are grateful for the continued dedication our crews show to their communities.”