Layoffs coming for the South Euclid Fire Department - 19 Action News|Cleveland, OH|News, Weather, Sports

Layoffs coming for the South Euclid Fire Department

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South Euclid council votes to layoff five firefighters South Euclid council votes to layoff five firefighters
SOUTH EUCLID, OH (WOIO) -

The South Euclid Fire Department is about to lose five of the 32 people in the department. The firefighters union says that will have a huge impact on handling emergencies.

South Euclid firefighters were very visible at the city council meeting Monday night.  The layoffs, expected by the end of the week, are raising concerns among residents and the firefighters' union. There are concerns about response time, manpower and safety.

"Flat out dangerous.  It's going to be dangerous to the residents.  It's going to be dangerous to the firefighters. It can mean the difference between life and death for a heart attack for instance. For a stroke.  For a house fire," said Dan Drees, President of South Euclid Firefighters Union.

The South Euclid fire department handles more than 3000 calls per year in this community, mostly for medical emergencies.

Drees said service will suffer, meaning longer waits for ambulances and fire trucks.

"We're going to be relying on neighboring cities more and more. We have to hope that those neighboring cities are also available. Everybody here in this area is short-staffed to begin with and busy," said Drees.

Barring a major development, the cuts will kick in Saturday.  The union is asking South Euclid residents to call city hall to ask the mayor to rethink the cuts. 

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