New water rescue centre created for Gloucestershire

A water rescue centre thought to be the first of its kind in the UK has been created in Gloucestershire.

Gloucestershire Fire & Rescue Service and Severn Area Rescue Service (Sara) will provide rescue cover of the rivers Avon and Severn.

The centre, based at Tewkesbury Fire Station, will share crews, lifeboats, life rafts and two hovercrafts.

Paul Watkins, of Sara, said the service provided an "unrivalled provision for marine and land search incidents".

The service will be deployed on command from GFRS headquarters in Quedgeley.

Chief fire officer John Hall said the new service would provide a "range of responders not previously available to any one organisation".

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