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Ballymoney
Saturday, June 25, 2022

Council to thank fire fighters
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Tributes were paid to firefighters at the full council meeting of Causeway Coast and Glens with Councillor John McAuley, a part-time firefighter, receiving a special mention.

It was proposed that council now write to the Chief Fire Officer for Northern Ireland thanking all firefighters for the work they do.

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The matter was raised by DUP Alderman John Finlay who said: “As you know on November 22 we had a huge fire in Ballymoney at the old Fleming Poultry factory.

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“I just want to pay tribute to all the firefighters across Northern Ireland that do a tremendous job. Sometimes we see them and we take them for granted but day and daily they are out saving lives, protecting buildings, rescuing people from cars and doing a big job.

“I know in the Ballymoney case there were 130 firefighters on the scene at the height of the fire including one of our own, Councillor John McAuley, who is a part-time firefighter.

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“These men are on call 90 hours a week no matter what fire station they are working in and I would like council to write to the Chief Fire Officer for Northern Ireland saying a big thank you for all that they do. 

“They are taken for granted, they aren’t well paid and yet they do that and risk their lives and limbs so that you or I might be rescued if we ever needed them.

“When that buzzer goes off in Councillor McAuley’s pocket, he doesn’t ask if you are orange or green or are you black or white, he’s down the stairs like a rottweiler after somebody and he’s out the door and away.”

The Mayor agreed that council will write to the NIFRS Chief Officer.

Staying on the topic of emergency services, PUP Councillor Russell Watton thanked all who attended the scene following the sudden death of two men in a flat at Elms Park, Coleraine.

Councillor Watton said: “It would be remiss of me not to mention the tragic death of two fellows down in Ballysally and the word tragedy is an understatement.

“I would like to thank those who were there from the fire brigade, police and ambulance and the whole community too.”

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