Fire chiefs reject plans to transfer control of firefighters to the Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs), according to the Local Government Association (LGA).
The Government is consulting on allowing PCCs to replace the Fire and Rescue Authorities (FRAs), which currently manage the fire services.
In response, the LGA, which represents all 46 fire authorities in England, warns that the proposed moves could divert valuable resources away from community work presently carried out by firefighters.
Firefighters carry out 700,000 home safety visits and work with a range of health partners and schools to prevent poor health, reduce the pressure on the NHS, save money and improve lives.
Cllr Jeremy Hilton, chair of the LGA's Fire Services Management Committee, said:
‘Firefighters are already achieving so much and we do not want to hinder this with unhelpful, unnecessary and restrictive legislation. The fire service is not a failing service and does not need to be messed around with.’
‘Through their work to build healthy, safe and resilient communities, firefighters can make a major contribution to the Government's overall ambition for a healthier, more secure society.’ he added.