Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service causes of concern revisit
In December 2020, we reviewed Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service’s updated action plans for responding to their causes of concern. This letter sets out our assessment of these plans and next steps.
The focus of these plans was the causes of concern we gave after our inspection of the service in November 2018. These were:
- The service’s fire engine availability is regularly less than the minimum number of engines needed to give fire cover to the public of Northamptonshire. And control room supervisors don’t routinely notify the officer on duty when fire engine availability falls below the minimum level as outlined in the operational response mobilising policy. The service has no formal process to manage this situation when the officer on duty has been notified.
- The service can’t assure itself that its firefighters have all safety-critical skills needed to respond to emergency incidents. Training records on the central training database were out of date. Also, line managers weren’t keeping competence records up to date.
We have revisited the service twice to review progress; in June 2019 Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service revisit 2018/19, and March 2020 Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service second revisit 2020.
From these revisits we are satisfied that the service has made positive progress in relation to the causes of concern we identified.
This letter was sent to the Chief Fire Officer of Northamptonshire FRS in March 2021.