Scotland's top firefighter quits after probe into misconduct claims

Martin Blunden was suspended earlier this year after claims over his conduct were brought forward by staff.

Scotland’s top firefighter quits after investigation into ‘bullying’ allegations Website

Scotland’s top firefighter has stepped down from his role after a probe into allegations of “bullying”.

Chief officer Martin Blunden was previously suspended amid a probe into his conduct after a number of claims were made by staff.

Blunden, who joined the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) from South Yorkshire in early 2019, replaced Alasdair Hay in the role, but will now be succeeded in the short term by interim chief officer Ross Haggart.

The SFRS said the recruitment process for a permanent replacement was under way.

In a statement, Dr Kirsty Darwent, chairwoman of the SFRS board, said: “I can confirm that Martin Blunden has stepped down as chief officer of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service. As has been previously reported, Mr Blunden was subject to a formal investigation into conduct allegations. 

“Due to confidentiality, I am unable to comment any further.

“We expect the highest standards of our staff and take any allegation regarding their conduct extremely seriously.

“We have robust procedures in place to ensure complaints are investigated in line with our clear policies and procedures.”

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