By Jennifer McGraw

ROSEVILLE (CBS13) — The Roseville City Council made some tough cuts to its fire department on Wednesday night, cutting two shifts from each rotation.

In case of a car crash or house fire, four firefighters are currently dispatched per truck. The city wants to scale back to three.

“It will reduce the efficiency of those truck companies by 50 percent,” did George Titus with the firefighter’s union.

He said currently the four firefighters work in pairs, that can’t happen with only three.

“The choice has to be made whether we go to the roof and ventilate or we go immediately inside and do a rescue operation. they can’t be done simultaneously,” he said.

The city is currently is losing around $2 million each year. By removing two positions per shift and it can save around $500,000 annually and it would be considered part of a pilot project.

“We are not eliminating staff, we are really eliminating overtime,” said Dom Casey, acting city manager.

He said calls for fire service are only a fraction of 911 emergencies and through collaboration with fire to make these cuts he believes it will be at no cost to public safety.

“I would never recommend something to a council if I thought it was putting our firefighters or community at risk,” Casey said.

Council members said tough cuts have to be made, but at what true cost will yet to be seen.

The fire chief said the biggest impact will affect structure fires, but he’s confident his department can implement these changes.

Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this article stated Folsom has 3-person fire crews. They have 4-person crews.

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