Hundreds of firefighters from the West Midlands and Staffordshire will strike next week in a row over pensions.
The strike has has been announced for next Wednesday, in response to controversial government moves to raise the pension age for firefighters to 60.
They will down tools between midday and 4pm.
Fire service bosses in the region said contingency plans had been drawn up over several weeks.
Firefighters across the West Midlands and Staffordshire region will take part in the strike - the first nationwide walkout in a decade.
The government wants firefighters to retire at 60, but the FBU says this could endanger the public due to the fitness of older staff.
A recent government review found that more than half of current firefighters between the ages of 50 and 54 are no longer able to meet fire and rescue service fitness standards for fighting fires, while two thirds of those beyond the age of 55 fail to meet the standards.
West Midlands Fire Service area commander Paul Burnham said: “We fully understand and appreciate the level of feeling among those firefighters who will be striking. We very much hope that the dispute can be resolved as soon as possible.
“In the meantime our focus, as always, is on how best to keep people safe across the West Midlands. We’re taking every precaution to keep disruption to a minimum and to make sure people are protected.
“By using staff who aren’t involved in the action, and by working closely with other agencies, we’re confident that we’ll be able to provide an effective emergency response when required.
“Most house fires are preventable, and the public can make a huge contribution to their own safety."
Andy Dennis, secretary for the Fire Brigades Union in the West Midlands, said: "The expectation is now that firefighters up to the age of 60 will be expected to be operating in the field, and that's not something the public would expect.
"We have had two years of negotiations and the government has failed to put forward a significantly improved offer.
"They have ignored their own report on fire standards and pensionable age for firefighters, and forged ahead with a pension age of 60.
"We would argue a pension age of 55, and all the medical evidence we've put forward suggests that is the proper age."
Fire Minister Brandon Lewis called the strike action 'unnecessary and avoidable'.