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KFRS to Conclude Channel Tunnel Contract in 2025

In a significant development, Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) has announced the forthcoming conclusion of its longstanding private contract with Eurotunnel, scheduled for 2025. This decision marks the culmination of nearly three decades of dedicated fire cover provision at the Channel Tunnel, serving as a crucial safety measure at the gateway to Europe.

The contractual agreement with the Channel Tunnel has been a distinct facet of KFRS’s operations, operating independently from its routine public services. Under this arrangement, KFRS has maintained exclusive, round-the-clock fire cover at the crossing, ensuring the safety and security of travellers and infrastructure.

Mercedes service vehicle in underground maintenance tunnel.

Ann Millington, Chief Executive of KFRS, reassured the public that despite the termination of the contract, safety measures at the Channel Tunnel would not be compromised. Millington affirmed, “While the operation is no longer viable for Kent Fire and Rescue Service, fire cover and safety will not be compromised – there will still be a fire station at the tunnel with a full fire and rescue team.

Firefighters standing by fire engines in station

Acknowledging the strong collaborative ties between KFRS and Eurotunnel, Millington emphasised that the partnership will endure beyond the contract’s conclusion. Firefighters stationed at locations nearest to the crossing, including Dover, Folkestone, and Ashford, will remain poised to respond to emergencies at the site promptly and effectively, in alignment with established protocols.

Looking ahead, Eurotunnel will embark on the process of exploring alternative options for 24/7 onsite services over the coming year. This strategic transition aims to ensure a seamless transition as the departure from the longstanding contract approaches.

As preparations for the conclusion of the Channel Tunnel contract unfold, KFRS and Eurotunnel remain committed to upholding the highest standards of safety and emergency response, safeguarding the interests of all stakeholders involved.

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