SCABS could be drafted in to keep a top nuclear site running during a firefighters’ strike, bosses suggested yesterday.
Firefighters at Sellafield, who are represented by general union GMB, say their pay has suffered a 5 per cent real-terms decline since 2009.
They will now walk out for 24 hours on the morning of July 24, having backed strikes by a margin of two to one in a ballot last month.
In a statement, a company spokesman said Sellafield had a “commercial agreement in place with a third party provider to ensure fire safety standards are maintained.”
GMB organiser Chris Jukes said: “Like everyone else in the country who hasn’t had pay rises that have kept pace with inflation, GMB’s firefighter members at Sellafield need to pay the bills.
“The offer from Sellafield Limited falls short of what’s necessary to start making up the ground GMB members have lost to inflation over the last decade.
“The decision to strike has not been taken lightly and fact that this is the first time that GMB members working as firefighters at Sellafield will have taken strike action tells you all you need to know in this regard.”
Union reps warned that more strikes would follow unless an agreement was reached.
The Sellafield spokesman added: “We have been notified of the GMB’s intention to stage a 24-hour strike on July 24 following the union’s decision to reject a 5 per cent pay rise for Sellafield Ltd firefighters.
“As always, the safety and security of the Sellafield site will be our priority during this industrial action.”