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Warwickshire County Council’s Cabinet endorsed a plan of action to address the issues raised following an inspection by HMICFRS.

Warwickshire County Council’s Cabinet today (Thursday 9 November) endorsed a plan of action to address the issues raised following an inspection by HMICFRS (His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services) on Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WFRS).

WFRS’ report to Cabinet summarised the findings of the recent inspection and highlighted areas in which Warwickshire has shown improvement since the last inspection in 2021. 

Two of the three previous causes of concern have been discharged, along with 40% of the original Areas For Improvement (AFI), while the report detailed how the service has responded positively to the remaining Causes of Concern and AFIs.

Cabinet was assured that all high-risk residential buildings have been inspected with a regular schedule of inspections in place. In addition, fire safety audits of high-risk business premises have increased by nearly 400% in the last year.  

Making the best use of resources, and ensuring that need drives activity, was challenged by HMICFRS, and separate projects or workstreams have been established to address this. Broader use of IT among staff will increase productivity and Cabinet was reassured that operational staff have all the equipment they need when attending an incident.

Warwickshire has also made good progress in its community risk management, where the service works in partnership with the community and local organisations to understand the specific needs of their areas. Similarly, great strides have been made towards increasing the inclusion and diversity within the service.

Cllr Andy Crump, Portfolio Holder for Fire and Rescue and Community Safety, said:  

"Cabinet is pleased to see the response to the findings of HMICFRS.  It clearly illustrates the tremendous progress that has been made in a very short time.

“But there is more to do, and it will take further time to reach the standards that WFRS is striving for to ensure we remain fit not only for the present but well into the future.”

Listen to the Chief Fire Officer Ben Brook discuss the findings of HMICFRS and WFRS’ response to the report here:

More information about Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service is available here:

Published: 9th November 2023

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