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Fire and Rescue contributions

Justice for Fire and Rescue Service contributions

Every Fire and Rescue Authority in England and Wales is required to produce an Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP). Through local determination of risk and local determination of response standards, it is expected that this will:

  • reduce the number of emergency incidents occurring
  • reduce death and injury from fire and other emergency incidents
  • reduce the socio-economic impacts of fire
  • protect heritage
  • safeguard the environment
  • contribute to the development of stronger, more self-sufficient and cohesive communities
  • provide value for money

Underpinned by statutory obligations within the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004, the Fire and Rescue National Framework document sets out the government’s expectations of fire authorities for reducing and managing community risk. This is through proactive prevention and protection activity and providing an efficient and effective emergency response.

Section 17 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 requires local authorities and other agencies to consider crime and disorder reductions and community safety in the exercise of all their duties and activities.

The legislation imposes a requirement on Fire and Rescue Authorities to ensure efficient and effective fire and rescue provision, and to ensure that the service contributes effectively to the wider community safety agenda.

New development schemes place additional demand on fire and rescue resources. This is in terms of the need for additional capital investment in new facilities and funding for additional equipment, and on revenue budgets for firefighters, officers and support staff. Warwickshire Fire and Rescue Service (WRFS) needs should be taken into account when determining planning applications relating to the provision of new development.

Policy support for securing effective and efficient fire and rescue services in order to create safe places is provided by national and regional planning policy guidance and central government publications.

The proposed growth in Warwickshire is set to see in excess of an additional 60,000 new homes being built through to 2030, along with significant increases in industry and commercial buildings and associated road networks.

New developments and associated infrastructure will attract people to live and work in the area and lead to an increase in traffic volumes and movements. The nature of the development is significant as sheltered and low cost housing may be inhabited by individuals who are at a higher risk of injury, such as lone elderly with limited mobility. Higher numbers and greater volumes inevitably result in implications for WFRS, this can be for:

  • incident numbers
  • changes in risk profile
  • increased times for attendance to incidents involving both fire and non-fire rescue

This places additional demands on the fire and rescue and other emergency services’ resources to ensure safe communities and places are maintained, consistent with national government expectations and guidance.

The demands on WFRS resources will vary according to the scale and nature of proposed development but could include the need to:

  • secure land and capital contributions to enable the delivery of new WFRS facilities
  • secure capital contributions to extend existing provision
  • replace temporary provision with permanent structures
  • provide additional vehicles or response resources
  • acquire land and the capital costs of fire and rescue service buildings and associated facilities for the provision of new fire stations
  • extend communication infrastructures
  • reduce risk and demand through advice and the provision of equipment

WFRS is a regulator of fire safety compliance in many businesses and this includes a requirement to inspect plans and high risk premises. In some instances this leads to the requirement for formal action or prosecution of businesses who neglect their duties to provide fire safe buildings.

WFRS employ staff to inspect water hydrants and ensure they are in good working order in advance of them being required to fight fires. Any additions to premises numbers increases ongoing revenue costs in an area.

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