BROOKLYN - ? The city is cutting the number of firefighters available at firehouses for the next several weeks.

Fire officials say the temporary reduction is due to high absentee rates among firefighters. According to the Uniformed Firefighter Association?s labor contract, reductions must occur if absentee rates are higher than 7.5 percent.

Neighbors say they still feel safe despite the cutbacks. However, some say firefighters are needed because they assist with more than fires.