Kent Fire and Rescue Service fire engine
Kent's first firefighter strike in a decade has come to an end after crews walked out for four hours in a row over pensions.
Crews across the country took the action because they were not happy with the idea of working for longer - but getting less back in retirement.
Kent Fire and Rescue Service chiefs said 999 calls were still answered and contingency plans helped deal with emergencies.
Chief executive Ann Millington revealed 22 fire engines, crewed by around 100 firefighters, covered the county until 4pm - instead of the usual 48 engines.
She said the brigade was forced to prioritise resources and said crews were not sent to calls where there is no risk to the public.
Ms Millington said unions had promised that crews would not walk away from ongoing jobs and would return to work in the event of a major emergency.
Earlier, she said: "We have 22 response vehicles in place today, with crews.
"We've done it in such a way that we are able to respond to all the various incidents we may get, including people in rivers, RTCs, fires and other types of incidents.
"We've tried to make sure we've got a good varied response.
"Obviously, that's much decreased from normal, but we are able to respond to most.
"We've also got a good relationship with the unions and we've had positive discussions about if there are many major incidents they will come back and turn out."
Rather than allocating those crews fire stations, bosses will deploy them elsewhere to "cover the biggest numbers of people".
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Crews from Kent Fire and Rescue Service
Ms Millington added: "We're able to cover all the population of Kent today by putting fire engines in different places.
"We will decide as the calls come in where to use our fire engines and will ensure where a gap emerges we'll move another engine in to cover.
"All day, we'll be able to cover most of Kent - people will still get a response. We'll be able to cope as well as possible."
Despite KFRS insisting its contingency plans will work during the four-hour walkout, chiefs issued a long "take extra care" checklist.
It includes checking smoke alarms, unplugging electrical items, not walking dogs in risky areas and keeping a close eye on cooking, "especially if you've been drinking alcohol or are on medication".
- Kent Fire and Rescue Service chief executive Ann Millington
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Between 80% and 90% of Kent's firefighters walked out in the row with the government over pensions.
It centres on the pensions paid to firefighters who retire between the ages of 50 and 60 due to ill-health or not meeting fitness standards.
Unions say firefighters who retire early will be unable to claim their full pensions despite, in some cases, decades of service.
Mark Simmons, Kent secretary of the Fire Brigades Union, said: "There's no one out there who wants firefighters forced to work until they're 60. It could affect public safety."
Speaking of the stark safety warning by Kent fire chiefs, he said his quarrel was not with the regional service, adding: "They're doing their best.
"We've picked a time that's in the middle of the day. It's not a time when there's high risk; it's not when people are in their beds.
"It's a time when call numbers are reasonably low. A major incident or a national incident would allow for a general recall to work, but that would be in exceptional circumstances."
The checklist also includes not overloading multi-plug adaptors, not setting ovens via a timer and not leaving a washing machine or tumble dryer running in an empty house.
During the industrial action, all the country's 46 fire and rescue authorities have a legal duty to put contingency plans in place.
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