Agenda and minutes

Venue: Washington Hall, Service Training Centre, Euxton. View directions

Contact: Diane Brooks, Principal Member Services Officer  Tel: 01772 866720 Email:  dianebrooks@lancsfirerescue.org.uk

Link: View the meeting here

Items
No. Item

10-20/21

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

None received.

11-20/21

Disclosure of Pecuniary and Non-Pecuniary Interests

Members are asked to consider any pecuniary and non-pecuniary interests they may have to disclose to the meeting in relation to matters under consideration on the agenda.

Minutes:

None received.

12-20/21

Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 273 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED: - That the Minutes of the last meeting held on 12 July 2021 be confirmed as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

13-20/21

Annual Service Report pdf icon PDF 233 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chief Fire Officer, Justin Johnston presented the report and an accompanying video.

 

The Annual Service Report (ASR) was produced annually by the Service as part of its accountability to measure progress against the items set out as deliverables as part of the Annual Service Plan 2020-2022 which were derived from the Integrated Risk Management Plan 2017-2022.

 

The last Annual Service Plan was produced in 2020 and had been extended to cover a two-year (2020-2022) period due to the Covid-19 pandemic changing organisational direction and priorities. During this time the Service diversified its offerings to support the local, regional, and national response.

 

The Annual Service Report as now considered by Members, reviewed progress through the 2020 – 2021 reporting year and highlighted the fantastic work that had been delivered in the face of a global crisis: -

?

Making Lancashire safer during the Covid-19 pandemic

 

The Service played a central role in the response to the pandemic from an early stage, working as one team alongside partner agencies in the Lancashire Resilience Forum. Over 500 members of staff offered to carry out new activities delivering essential services.

 

The Service: i) visited over 1,400 vulnerable residents delivering interventions and welfare checks; ii) co-ordinated distribution of PPE supplies to health and social care settings across the county from the training centre; iii) provided P3 face mask fitting to hospital and social care workers; iv) supported the establishment of a temporary hospital and morgue; and v) trained 54 staff to assist with mass casualties.

 

The Service also adapted to support people in alternative ways including: i) donating 57 reconditioned iPads to hospitals and hospices for virtual visits; ii) creating digital fire safety education sessions when face-to-face engagement couldn’t take place in schools; iii) launching a digital Prince’s Trust programme for vulnerable young people who lost support and coping mechanisms during the pandemic; iv) with public events unable to take place and Bonfire Night presenting an increased risk of fires and injuries across the county with people holding celebrations at home, the Service worked with local authorities, Lancashire Police and North West Ambulance Service to carry out tactical prevention activity in communities and co-respond to incidents over the period; v) delivered digital Bright Sparx education sessions, designed to educate young people about bonfire and fireworks safety, to over 10,000 pupils; and vi) a public safety campaign encouraged people to enjoy the event in alternative ways, including watching a family fireworks display which was streamed online.

 

By Christmas 2020 attention turned to supporting local NHS services to establish vaccination centres. The Service led the sector taking on this role and: provided site management, marshalling, administration and logistics support to mass vaccination venues and community sites.  Firefighters and support services staff worked at vaccination centres seven days a week: meeting and greeting patients, completing patient health checks, reassuring people as they prepared for the vaccine, helping clinical staff when needed, giving post vaccine support and administering vaccines directly to patients.  By the end of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 13-20/21

14-20/21

Draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) 2022-2027 - Consultation Outcomes pdf icon PDF 328 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Fire Officer presented the report.

 

At the Planning Committee meeting of the Combined Fire Authority on 12 July 2021, Members endorsed the publication of the draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) 2022 - 27 for consultation over a ten-week period from 14 July 2021 to 21 September 2021.

 

The consultation plan was created in line with the Service’s consultation strategy and following an equality impact assessment of the impact of the draft CRMP on groups likely to be affected. The aim was to consult local communities and stakeholders about the risks in Lancashire to inform how the Service mitigated and responded to them and provide opportunities for stakeholders. Matters consulted on included: whether the plan identified the greatest risks to the communities and people of Lancashire; identified any unmet need; measures in place to mitigate and respond to risk; and the plan’s overarching aim and priorities.

 

During the consultation period, the draft documents were made available on the Service’s website together with an online survey. Printed copies were made available on request. Identified stakeholders included Service employees; local authorities; emergency services and other public agencies; town and parish councils; third sector partners such as voluntary groups and charities; businesses; representative bodies; landowners; community groups; and members of the public. Communications activity was tailored to target audiences and ranged from writing directly to partner organisations and staff engagement sessions to digital advertising and email marketing. Feedback was accepted via the online survey, by email and in comments on social media platforms.

 

Overall, the consultation feedback endorsed the draft CRMP, the Service’s priorities and approach to community risks in Lancashire. Full details of the consultation feedback, process requirements and resulting amendments (which had been included in the proposed final version of the CRMP and attached as appendix 2) were now considered by Members.

 

Members were impressed with the format of the report and the draft CRMP.  The Committee Chairman found the report fascinating and pertinent against the background of the recent global climate change discussions where, as Lancashire became hotter and wetter it was likely there would be more flooding, wildfire and water related incidents.

 

As part of the final recommendations to the full Combined Fire Authority meeting scheduled for 21 February 2022, Members agreed to include a data and digital strategy, which was currently being drafted.

 

RESOLVED: - That the Committee:

i)       Endorsed the consultation process surrounding the draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) 2022 - 27 as adequate in scale and scope; and

ii)      Referred final recommendations to the full Combined Fire Authority meeting of 21 February 2022 for approval to publish.

15-20/21

Automatic Fire Alarm Attendance Policy - Consultation Review pdf icon PDF 874 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Deputy Chief Fire Officer presented the report.

 

A recommendation made by the Performance Committee at its meeting on 17 March 2021 (resolution 45/19 refers) to remove attendance to Automatic Fire Alarms (AFA) at non?sleeping premises, unless presence of fire was confirmed, staged over two years; to be introduced during the day in year one and during the night from year two, was considered and approved for public and stakeholder consultation at full Fire Authority on 21 June 2021 (resolution 14-20/21 refers).

 

The resulting consultation commenced on 12 August 2021 and concluded on 21 September 2021. In accordance with standing terms of reference, the consultation outcomes and associated recommendations were brought back for consideration by the Planning Committee.

 

The report as now considered by Members summarised the consultation strategy, its outcomes, and policy development and implementation approach previously adopted elsewhere in the North West and nationally.

 

The recommendations related to the AFA attendance policy and the wider unwanted fire signals (UWFS) reduction benefits that could be achieved through the implementation campaign and associated improvements to the wider UWFS policy. All options proposed aligned with current National Fire Chiefs Council guidance.

 

It was noted that the report did not consider the broader issue of escalating alarms originating from Telecare systems in domestic dwellings. This would be considered separately through the creation of a specific policy in the 2022?23 LFRS Prevention Department Plan.

 

County Councillor O’Toole sought reassurance from Officers regarding the serious claims made by the FBU, as referred to in paragraphs 5 and 6 of their response to the consultation on page 151 of the agenda pack.  In response the Chief Fire Officer advised that the comments did not seem to fit with areas both within the Community Risk Management Plan and AFA consultations regarding areas for change as neither made any staffing reductions.

 

The Chairman thought the data presented was very good and advised that if required further analysis of the free text could be possible to gain further insight into why people responded in the way they had.

 

RESOLVED: - That the following be recommended to the full Authority on 13 December 2021: -

 

1.    Adopt a False Alarm Reduction and Emergency Call Management (ECM) policy already in use by one North West Fire and Rescue Service within North West Fire Control as the baseline for the revised LFRS approach;

2.    Exempt Grade 1 and 2* Heritage premises (* subject to meeting specific criteria) from the non-attendance policy;

3.    Exempt Primary and Secondary Education premises from the non-attendance policy;

4.    Exempt premises with ‘Enhanced Reliability Alarm Systems’ from the non-attendance policy;

5.    Undertake a three-month implementation phase to engage stakeholders, and launch the new policy from 1April 2022;

6.    Ensure Fire Alarm Monitoring Organisations sign up to refreshed ‘call back’ agreements;

7.      Implement changes by day in year 1(Day 08:00hrs to 19:00hrs) and review thereafter.

16-20/21

Strategic Assessment of Risk 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 313 KB

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Fire Officer presented the report.

 

The Strategic Assessment of Risk (SAoR) was first published in 2016.  It was updated each year and had been refreshed for the year 2021/22.  It utilised data from the Incident Recording System which helped the identification of highest risk activities / incidents and was informed by the Lancashire Resilience Forum Community Risk Register.

 

The Strategic Assessment of Risk reflected the knowledge and experience of a variety of specialist departments and was consolidated each summer to allow for departmental plans to be produced and for the Service’s annual planning day.  The document supported the publication of the draft Community Risk Management Plan (CRMP) 2022/27 and moreover the draft Annual Service Plan 2022/23 by capturing the dynamic picture of the changing risk in Lancashire.

 

Risk in Lancashire would always remain dynamic; it changed over time, differed by area and demographic, and needed different interventions to reduce the likelihood of the risk occurring or to lessen its consequences.

Through the risk management framework changing risk was constantly assessed and prioritised our response framework.  A wider consultation had also taken place, involving District Councils, Lancashire County Council and Lancashire Constabulary, in order to gain a more complete collaborative picture of the perceived risk from the viewpoint of all organisations.

 

The 201/22 SAoR built on previous versions of the annual risk assessment methodology whereby each of the 32 incident types such as domestic fires, flooding and road traffic collisions had been quantified using a likelihood and consequence score.  The likelihood element looked at the frequency of the incident type occurring within Lancashire utilising the incident data for the previous 3 years. The consequence score was determined by an average derived from seven categories, these being loss of life, injury, economic, environmental, societal, political and impact upon staff.

 

Maintaining a clear and current understanding of the risks that affected Lancashire’s communities underpinned everything that the Service did; driving both governance and planning arrangements.

 

RESOLVED: - That the Planning Committee noted and endorsed the Strategic Assessment of Risk 2021/22.

17-20/21

Prevention, Protection, Response Strategies pdf icon PDF 261 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Fire Officer presented the report.

 

Fire and Rescue Authorities (FRAs) were required by the National Framework to produce a local Community Risk Management Plan that set out the Authority’s strategy, in collaboration with other agencies, for reducing the commercial, economic, and social impact of fires and other emergency incidents This report detailed how the Community Risk Management Plan 2022-27 had been drafted to include 5 underpinning strategies providing a greater level of detail:

 

1.    Prevention strategy- preventing- fires and other emergencies from happening;

2.    Protection strategy- protecting people and property when they happen;

3.    Response strategy- responding to fires and other emergencies quickly and competently;

4.    People strategy- valuing our people so they can focus on Making Lancashire safer;

5.    Finance strategy- delivering value for money in and how we use our resources.

 

Whilst there were 5 key Strategies within the draft Community Risk Management Plan 2022-2027, this report provided detail with regards to:

 

i)       Prevention Strategy, preventing fires and other emergencies from happening;

ii)      Protection Strategy, protecting people and property when they happen, and;

iii)    Response Strategy, responding to fires and other emergencies quickly and competently, appendices 1?3 as now considered by Members.

 

The People Strategy which sought to recruit and deliver a workforce which was resilient, highly skilled, flexible, diverse and which could deliver the Service’s aim of keeping the people of Lancashire safer would be presented to Resources Committee in December 2021 for review and approval.

 

The Finance Strategy provided details with regards to revenue, capital and reserves and balances; this would be presented to the Combined Fire Authority meeting in February 2022 for the review and approval.

 

As mentioned earlier on the agenda the addition of a Data and Digital Strategy was currently be drafted for inclusion.  This would also be brought to the CFA meeting in February 2022.

 

RESOLVED: - That the Committee noted the 6 key strategies that underpinned the draft CRMP 2022-2027 and approved the Prevention, Protection and Response Strategies.

 

18-20/21

Sub 18m High Rise Residential Update pdf icon PDF 431 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report, presented by the Assistant Chief Fire Officer, responded to a question raised by the Committee Chairman at the Planning Committee meeting held 12 July 2021 on ‘whether mid to high-rise buildings were in the same position as high-rise buildings?’. It was noted that the fire safety guidance and legislation had evolved and changed significantly since the Grenfell tragedy and that it continued to do so at pace.

 

This report provided an overview of how the legislation and associated guidance had evolved and how this related to Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service’s (LFRS) increasing duties as the Enforcing Authority for the Fire Safety Order 2005, Fire Safety Bill 2021, and Building Safety Bill (Draft). It was likely that there were sub 18m residential premises with external wall systems that had flammability performance which would not be acceptable if they had floors over 18m. Government guidance, and thus regulatory capability to address such issues (by any regulator) had evolved significantly in recent months away from a default inference to remove and remediate the cladding (the inferred position immediately post Grenfell) towards a much greater emphasis on proportionality, accepting a limited degree of flammability, and adopting risk assessed approaches.

 

It was vital that the Service had clear and unambiguous national guidance to follow so that when enforcement powers relating to external wall systems were conferred upon Fire and Rescue Service’s [in October 2021] by virtue of the Fire Safety Bill, the Service (and Fire Authority) were first and foremost able to ‘make Lancashire Safer’, but also in doing so were able to discharge legal responsibilities in a manner that matched national expectation, did not cause unjustifiable duress to leaseholders, and did not lead to enforcement action being successfully appealed in a manner that might impact significantly on the physical and financial resources of the Authority.

 

It was noted that the report did not detail the wider regulatory and resource issues concerning the new Building Safety Bill as that legislation related specifically [at that time] to Higher Risk Residential Buildings over 18m which would be jointly enforced by the Service working as part of the new Building Safety Regulator (with HSE / Building Control). This was being developed and planned to receive Royal assent in April 2022 and be enabled in 2023.

 

Building Risk Review

Lancashire had 69 higher risk residential premises which had all been fully audited under the Building Risk Review process.  In addition to reporting back to the National Fire Chiefs Council, Home Office and Ministry of Housing Communities and Local Government on the make up of the external wall systems, the process had allowed inspectors to identify other aspects of fire safety non-compliance.

 

To date 6 premises in this height range have been identified as having non-compliant external wall systems; all have interim measures in place. A further 3 premises also implemented interim measures; not due to inadequacy of their external wall systems, but instead due to other serious fire safety non-compliance issues such as internal compartmentation  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18-20/21

19-20/21

Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) Update pdf icon PDF 318 KB

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Fire Officer advised that Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) inspection of the Service was due to be conducted in April/May 2020. This had been suspended due to the recall of staff within the HMICFRS returning to their own services to plan and manage the implications of the Covid-19 outbreak. The inspection was now scheduled for week commencing 22 November 2021.

 

In terms of preparations, the Organisational Assurance team had been liaising with departmental heads to ensure that ongoing work concerning items identified at the previous inspection had been prioritised effectively and demonstrable progress made.

 

A strategic brief was being developed and would be delivered during the first week of inspection. The narrative for this brief provided an opportunity to highlight distance travelled for areas that were identified as ‘areas for development’ from the previous inspection, as well as key areas of strength, potentially including some areas where the Service was demonstrating sector best practise.

 

The inspection itself would commence 22 November 2021, over six weeks in total, and was expected to be delivered using a hybrid approach i.e., some weeks would be in person and some elements delivered virtually. This had moved on from tranche one of the inspection process, which was completely virtual. After the conclusion of week four (week commencing 13 December), there would be a three-week break prior to recommencement for weeks five and six, from 10 January 2022. A debrief would be held in week eight.

 

The first tranche of inspections was due to be published early December 2021, along with the State of Fire and Rescue 2021 report. Tranche two reports, including Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service, were expected sometime in Summer 2022.

 

RESOLVED: - That the Committee noted and endorsed the report.

20-20/21

Blue Light Collaboration pdf icon PDF 147 KB

Minutes:

The report was presented by the Assistant Chief Fire Officer.

 

It was noted that the formal meetings of the Blue Light Collaboration Board were put on hold during the pandemic to enable resources to be directed into priority areas supporting the NHS. As previously reported, there was an incredible amount of work between the 3 Blue Light Services delivered during this period. Collaborative efforts included:

 

        LFRS delivering face fitting of masks to assist North West Ambulance Service and the NHS.

        LFRS assisting in the establishment of a temporary mortuary.

        LFRS developing a policy and training for movement of bodies.

        LFRS coordinating logistics for vast quantities of PPE to be used in healthcare settings.

        LFRS working with partners to support the operation of mass vaccination sites and then gaining the capability for injecting vaccines.

 

As services moved from the emergency phase of the pandemic into recovery, there had been an opportunity to reconvene the Blue Light Collaboration Board meetings. There had been two meetings held recently, the first of which was primarily utilised to reflect upon the evaluation report that provided a review of the deliverables and benefits realised from collaboration work prior to the pandemic. This review and associated report were carried out by Shared Service Architecture consultants who were recognised by both the National Fire Chiefs Council (NFCC) and National Police Chiefs Council (NPCC) as sector leads. The second meeting was to start considering what items could be included in the next iteration of the work plan.

 

There was a further meeting planned towards the end of November to evaluate the ideas that had been put forward for the refreshed work plan. Furthermore, a communications item was being developed for each of the services to use to brief respective management teams internally. Following that, a presentation would be delivered to the executive level sponsors in a meeting scheduled for January 2022, where it was proposed the new workplan would be signed off and progressed.

 

In response to a question raised by County Councillor Shedwick the Assistant Chief Fire Officer advised that emerging areas and opportunities were always considered by the Service (for example, the impact of climate change and the current development of a digital data strategy). He confirmed that he did not expect the new workplan to have the same scale and scope as the initial 31-point plan.

 

In response to a question from Councillor Williams regarding the current national shortage of computer chips the Assistant Chief Fire Officer advised that there had been some delays as the pandemic had accelerated the purchase of more equipment and although this was identified as a risk register item the shortage had not yet had an impact on the Service.

 

In response to a question from the Committee Chairman regarding the provision of fire ports (as used in Canada), the Assistant Chief Fire Officer advised that the Authority had 2 boats deemed to be rescue boats which were used on inland water and there were also  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20-20/21

21-20/21

Apprentice Firefighter OFSTED New Provider Monitoring Visit pdf icon PDF 382 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Assistant Chief Fire Officer presented the report. 

 

He advised that on 12 July 2021 the Service was notified by Ofsted that they would be undertaking their new provider monitoring Visit on 14 and 15 July. There were three HMI inspectors (one acting as an observer) who were based at Service Training Centre.  They visited Operational Stations and met a number of staff from various departments over the two days. Ofsted published the monitoring visit main findings report on 26 August (attached to the report as appendix 1 and now considered by Members).  The Service was judged as making ‘reasonable progress’ against three themes:

 

·      How much progress have leaders made in ensuring that the provider is meeting all the requirements of successful apprenticeship provision? (leadership and management theme);

·      What progress have leaders and managers made in ensuring that apprentices benefit from high-quality training that leads to positive outcomes for apprentices? (the ‘coal face’ learner experience theme);

·      How much progress have leaders and managers made in ensuring that effective safeguarding arrangements are in place? (learners are safe theme).

 

The lead HMI praised the progress to date and was very complimentary of the people they interacted with during their visit saying that everyone clearly demonstrated the organisation’s values and behaviours.

 

Following the visit key stakeholders met to discuss the feedback and learning. An action plan was developed on areas for further development, a number of those items have already been discharged as complete. Within the Training and Operational Review (TOR) department, Firefighter Apprentice progress was continually monitored, and a considerable amount of time and effort was placed on the delivery of this scheme. TOR worked alongside Service Delivery, Human Resources and Finance colleagues to ensure the Level 3 Operational Firefighter Apprenticeship was delivering high quality Firefighter Apprentices.  The next Ofsted visit would be a full inspection expected to take place between 12 – 40 months.

 

Members were pleased with the support provided to young people and the Committee Chairman recommended that this excellent work be widely publicised.

 

RESOLVED: - That the Committee noted the report.

22-20/21

Date of Next Meeting

The next scheduled meeting of the Committee has been agreed for 10:00 hours on 7 February 2022 in the Main Conference Room, at Lancashire Fire & Rescue Service Headquarters, Fulwood.

 

Further meetings are:          scheduled for 18 July 2022

                                                proposed for 21 November 2022

Minutes:

The next meeting of the Committee would be held on Monday, 7 February 2022 at 1000 hours in Washington Hall, Service Training Centre, Euxton.

 

Further meeting dates were noted for 18 July 2022 and agreed for 21 November 2022.

23-20/21

Exclusion of Press and Public

The Committee is asked to consider whether, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, they consider that the public should be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items of business on the grounds that there would be a likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the appropriate paragraph of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, indicated under the heading to the item.

Minutes:

RESOLVED: - That the press and members of the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following items of business on the grounds that there would be a likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in the appropriate paragraph of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Local Government Act 1972, indicated under the heading to the item.

24-20/21

Day Crewing Plus Future

Minutes:

(Paragraphs 3 and 4)

 

Members discussed a report on the future of the day crewing plus shift system.

 

RESOLVED: - that the recommendations in the report be approved.