The Greater Manchester Fire Service has announced that it has to find savings of thirty percent over the coming financial year. Unions are adamant that no fire service personnel will be lost, with the service already running at the safe minimum number of fire fighters.
One suggested approach from the audit commission is to reduce the size of the fire engines.
Currently, the fire service run with a Dennis Fire Truck, which is widely regarded as one of the best fire vehicles in the world, capable of dealing with any incident that the fire service may be called out to deal with, from fires to car accidents.
The Audit commission, however, has a different view, and claims that these behemoths are inefficient fuel users, barely managing twelve miles to the gallon, and cost a lot to maintain.
They have suggested instead that Fiat Cinquecentos are used instead.
"They are a reliable, fuel efficient vehicle," said Penny Pincher, from the Audit Commission. "They can carry five adults, and there's a reasonable sized boot [trunk] for carrying equipment, plus a roof rack option. They are nippy, and can be parked close to the fire."
Arsene Pyromaniac, Greater Manchester's top fireman, could barely contain his anger: "Is she mad? I bet she'd change her mind if it was her house on fire! Now please excuse me, there's something I have to do. Has anybody got some matches?"