The fire service has made significant cuts and any more would “mean someone, somewhere having a reduced response” a senior firefighter has told councillors.

At Ceredigion’s full council meeting on Thursday (March 21) fire service chief officer Chris Davies said that over the last six to eight years 27 per cent of firefighters had been cut as well as 34 per cent of middle and senior management.

“We’ve stripped out 20 per cent of out budget,” said Mr Davies, with millions of pounds of savings made through cutting station based crew, innovative business processes and a reduction of staff.

There are 58 fire stations across the mid and west Wales region with “different crewing models” and the service is risk led not demand led, the meeting was told.

“We are at the point now where anymore cuts to us will mean a reduction in service delivery, it would mean someone, somewhere, across the region, receives a response more slowly than they currently do.

“We’ve made significant cuts, as you have as a council, and there’s only three things that we can cut – personnel, appliances and equipment,” added Mr Davies.

Current pay discussions to reflect the expanding roles of firefighters also have the potential to impact on the service with a possible increase in public contributions required in future.

The number of house fires and car accidents requiring cutting someone free have decreased in Ceredigion, councillors heard, and the introduction of drone use had improved conditions and successes at incidents.

Mr Davies said that the co-responder scheme across the region, where fire service vehicles attend suspected heart attacks or other medical emergencies, had been very successful.

In terms of “ROSC” – return of spontaneous circulation – “bringing somebody back to life” there had been 54 confirmed said Mr Davies,

“That means 54 people walking around today who wouldn’t have been,” he added.

As well as building fires, grass fires – which spiked last summer – flood and water rescue, vehicle rescue there are also teams trained in “marauding terrorist firearm attack”  MTFA response, ready to assist across Wales and the UK.