Second engine in firefighter ban as union action spreads across New Zealand

The note on the 'blacked' fire truck. Photo / Supplied
The note on the 'blacked' fire truck. Photo / Supplied

Firefighters have banned another dodgy fire appliance, the second in less than a week.

The New Zealand Professional Firefighters' Union has extended its "blacking" of a fire engine to include Christchurch City's rescue tender, which carries critical life saving rescue equipment used to cut crash victims from vehicles.

The "Man" appliance has issues which are just too great for the union to ignore, spokesman Boyd Raines says.

It comes just days after Auckland firefightersrefused to use their main engine for fear someone will get killed.

However, the issue is likely to be more widespread than just two the main centres, Raines says.

"They're all the same truck with bad DNA. The risk to firefighters and the public is too great. Christchurch firefighters cite ongoing issues, build issues and the truck's quality of performance as reasons for pulling firefighters from their appliance."

The Auckland appliance's failures include water pumps that don't work, door latches falling off trapping firefighters and major engine trouble.

He says the faults were widespread across the fleet, introduced just last year, and were preventing firefighters from doing their job. So far there had been 215 complaints of gear failure.

New Zealand Fire Service Auckland regional manager Kerry Gregory earlier told the Herald the engines were not posing a dire threat but experiencing "teething problems". However, they were currently "moving to fix the issues".

- NZ Herald

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