SHORT-STAFFED fire stations could be forced to close their doors as the service looks for ways to fund state government-imposed budget cuts.
Up to eight stations out of 70 in Sydney could be left unattended at any one time, sources suggest, with firefighters warning yesterday the unprecedented austerity measure would compromise community safety.
Fire and Rescue NSW is being forced to make savings after the Treasurer, Mike Baird, reduced its wages cap by $30 million over the next four years, according to Treasury forecasts. More than $5 million has been cut from overtime and temporary staff in 2012-13 alone.
The cuts equate to 260 staff - about 6 per cent of the 6900-strong workforce