View Full Version : Shock! Horror! A good idea comes from the British government.....

10th Jun 2008, 20:55
Since the British Independent went all anti-aviation (Don't qualify that by saying "unnecessary aviation", you hate all of us aeronuts Indo! :mad:) I've had as much vitrial against it as, well, the Daily Hatred.

But looking up my beloved Civil Defence on the Internet, I came across this.....

Brown unveils civil defence network plan (http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brown-unveils-civil-defence-network-plan-797990.html?r=RSS)

Members of the public will be able to join a new form of civil defence network to protect Britain against natural disasters and terrorism, Prime Minister Gordon Brown announced today.

The organisations - likened to a new breed of "air raid precautions" or "ARP" wardens from the Second World War - will team up to build the country's resilience in a catastrophe.

In Ireland, the Civil Defence, as described above, is well established. There is a British Civil Defence, but it hasn't had the backing of government that we've had over the years.

Whatever about the rest of his bumbling and failure to take charge, if this gets up and running, then I can tell you it will be a great asset to Britain.

And no I'm not encouraging this so that the Irish and British Civil can set up exchange weekends which are excuses for p*ss-ups........

(it's not for nothing that we're known as the drinking organisation with a first-aid problem.....)

10th Jun 2008, 21:02
Don't worry nosefirst.. one day you will get to put on your combat boots and hi vis jackets for real and save the day. Then you'll deserve all the drink you ever forced down your throat. I never fancied Civil Defence. Me? I was an FCA man. Much more fun causing casualties than treating them.:ok:

Actually I'm surprised Britain hasn't got a similar organisation. In situations like floods, fires etc. Ireland's version has an auxiliary fire service too. It could prove invaluable.

10th Jun 2008, 21:10
In the immediate aftermath of WWII, the National Fire Service became the Auxiliary Fire Brigade, and there was also the Civil Defence (and the Observer Corps), together with the Women's Voluntary Service all of whom were available to combat 'disasters'.
I'm not sure whether anything of any of them remains (have the Green Goddesses been scrapped?).

Edited to add:- After 1968 the vehicles were mothballed, but occasionally used by the Armed Forces to provide fire cover in a number of fire strikes, notably in 1977 and 2002 (see UK firefighter dispute 2002-2003). They were also deployed to pump water in floods and droughts. They were well maintained in store and regularly road tested.
The role of Green Goddesses was superseded by new contingency arrangements. The Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 gives Government the power to instruct Fire and Rescue Authorities to make their vehicles available in the event of future industrial action. New Incident Response Units introduced after the September 11, 2001 attacks offer high power pumping ability among a range of other contingency functions.
In March 2004, the Government announced that it was conducting a test sale of 40 of its remaining fleet of more than 900 vehicles, and that it was planning to dispose of the remainder. The sale of the fleet has been completed and most of the vehicles have been sold on to fire brigades in developing countries, mostly in Africa.

Beatriz Fontana
10th Jun 2008, 21:32
I can see it now. Like the PCSOs, all uniform, no power! We are not going to get 300,000 volunteers, regional command bunkers and planners working on the worse case scenario. Well, OK, maybe the last bit. It's great fun playing a casualty of an emergency on the Tube on a Sunday morning.

As a bit of thread drift, last week a colleague spotted a PCSO apprehending a "suspect" and handcuffing them. Surely that's illegal? We thought a PCSO only had the power of citizen's arrest, not using a restraining device.

10th Jun 2008, 21:47
Don't tell 'em your name, Pike!

10th Jun 2008, 22:11
Hummmm...I may be cynical but this feels like the government trying to offload something that it would (should) otherwise have to pay for to do professionally.

How much money are they putting behind this?
How much are they currently spending on catastrophe management?
Is the total of these two sums under the new scheme greater or less than the current total?

I'm all in favour of citizens doing their bit (count me in), but this government is desperately seeking ways to cut expenditure without it looking like they are doing it, or cutting it in places that are not politically sensitive (ie that won't cost them seats in an election).

They are so morally bankrupt that suspicion is the first port of call. I hope I'm wrong.

...and, as a matter of interest, who is/are going to train these volunteers?

10th Jun 2008, 22:15
And how, precisely, are they going to prevent 'infiltration' of this underground force by those who would seek to undermine our infrastructure?

10th Jun 2008, 23:18
And how, precisely, are they going to prevent 'infiltration' of this underground force by those who would seek to undermine our infrastructure?

That statement presumes that there are those who wish to undermine infrastructure, and that this is an underground force.

It is an overt overground Search and Rescue organisation. It can't really provide anything useful to anyone who wishes to undermine infrastructure.

On a practical level, the Civil Defence runs like St. John's Ambulance service, or the Order of Malta. To do this, you'd ahve to show an interest in saving lives and property, and remain for a while. I don't think it can really provide anything useful to anyone who wishes to undermine infrastructure.

It's like the TA for Firemen, Paramedics, and Mountain Rescue people

Less of This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21gfZmSA-qE)

More of This (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LHY6eYu0cOE)

And This is just taking the P*ss (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cEAmtauCdsE)

11th Jun 2008, 01:11
A new National Security Forum featuring up to 30 experts from academia and other areas will advise another body set up last summer, the National Security Committee, which features ministers alongside intelligence agencies, police and military chiefs.

Well, there's a first. Academia, ministers and intelligence all in one sentence.

The cheapest and easiest way for the gummint to deal with disaster management would be to call an election.

11th Jun 2008, 03:41
Thousands of 'planes you'll wonder where they've come from?
Well they might ask . . .
(You don't see skies full of Lancasters and Meteors - or any other aircraft - nowadays.)

11th Jun 2008, 09:50
There used to be a flourishing Civil Defence network in the UK. When I did my Duke of Edinburgh's Award (OK - way, way back) Civil Defence was an optional part of the course. Not sure what the status of Civil Defence is now.

In my neck of the woods now there is the State Emergency Service (SES) and they cope with everything except fire and ambulance. They're all volunteers but are funded and trained through State resources.

In the last 2 days they have been fairly busy in putting tarps on roofs and making buildings safe after a tornado tore through Rockingham just south of Perth.

A link to find out more!


11th Jun 2008, 13:04

simon brown
11th Jun 2008, 13:32
I suspect that to become a "Civil" Defence Officer (Turn that f****g light out you b****rd) you will have to go on a 5 day accreditation course costing the individual 5K, that is based on a leaflet that is freely available on the internet.You will then be issued with an ill fitting polo shirt with a logo on, a whistle with no pea in it and a torch that doesnt work.

In order to stay current you will have to attend another 2 day course ( at cost of course)

...or am I just being cynical :ugh:

11th Jun 2008, 14:03
In England and Wales there is no legal obligation to rescue flood victims,
(more at:- http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7446550.stm )

12th Jun 2008, 09:02
Yes you are being f***ing cynical. :*

I'm beginning to understand how pilots on PPRuNe must feel when non-pilots make comments.

Here, the equipment can be crap. Some of the officers are apathetic, and at no stage do volunteers get paid for anything they do.

The lack of pay, however, helps keep "me feiners" out (me feiners=people only in anything for themselves, whingers, pessimists, cynics. :hmm: )

If you're here, you're here to learn to save lives. That's it.

On duty, you will be fed and all equipment you need issued.