– This before the Police cuts!
A dramatic incident took place in Rugby Town Centre today at 12,45pm with a bomb scare in the main shopping centre...
What happened today? What was the plan?
Rugby Green Party members and Rugby Against the Cuts members were leafleting at dinnertime around the clock tower at the time of the incident and were witnesses to the chaos that took place after people were eventually moved out of the Clock Towers Shopping Centre at around 12.45pm to the Clock Tower area in Market Place in the centre of Rugby.
Roy Sandison from Rugby Green Party explains what happened;
Roy says “I was very worried at the time for people’s safety and unfortunately It was clear that their too few Police Officers were on hand to coordinate a full scale evacuation of local people to a place of safety – Just two Police Officers in Market Place had way too much to do by themselves, which meant that people were still buying food from stalls, passing by the entrance of the shopping centre and also people were able to enter the eastern part of Market Place and join 100’s of confused people in Market Place up to 20 minutes after the alarm was raised..”
“The main road running through the town centre was also fully opened (with taxi’s still trying to pick up customers at the taxi rank)”.
“In my view the few Police and Support Officers on duty seem to be struggling with trying to get to grips with a changing plan of evacuation and seemed very small in numbers for the task in hand.”
“The Rugby Rangers whose part remit, I understand is to protect public safety and to liaise with the police were not in evidence during the evacuation despite being in evidence earlier.
“All in all, a scary chaotic scene at a time of heighten national concern about terrorism and in my mind it is very urgent that all the bodies involved in keeping us safe in Rugby have an honest discussion about what happened today in our town.”
Roy say “We were lucky today that nothing happened, but with 450 Police Cuts being made in Warwickshire and other Emergency Services facing job cuts as well> Will we be anywhere near prepared for something similar in the future?”
“In my view, The Tories (including Mark Pawsey MP) and the Lib Dem are taking a risk with our safety – today could have been much worse and it will clearly be even more risky and chaotic with less Police and Support Officers and we know that bomb scares are not the only risk to our safety.”
* Photo’s available on the Rugby Green Party website, but need to be credited to R. Sandison before use.