EST Feb 2014

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February 2014

Volume 15 | 1
















Company Profile




Last Words


IN THIS ISSUE INTEROPERABILITY 13 Read how JESIP is focused on developing and delivering a massive training programme specifically designed to improve how emergency services work together in the early stages of major and complex incidents, plus Merseyside gets ready to migrate to a Joint Control Centre for the region’s police and fire and rescue services


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Justin Johnston, Chair of CFOA’s FireFit Steering Group, is often asked for his opinion on the highly topical question of age and fitness of firefighters – here Justin discusses the topic with reference to the UK’s general population and, through the findings of recent studies, reveals what he calls a ‘wake-up call’ for firefighter fitness

SEVERE WEATHER 22 How the emergency services responded to the East Coast tidal surge in December and the widespread flooding, which has brought misery upon peoples’ lives since the New Year – from rescues, to welfare, innovative ‘sandbags’ to storm damage clean-up




Details of the NUMS project, which aims to significantly change the way in which police and other organisations procure their uniform clothing, Ballyclare acquires the Lion firefighter business in the UK, TEXPORT launches eyecatching fire and rescue clothing at the A+A trade exhibition and Jill Emmanuel from Alexandra workwear discusses whether paramedics are sufficiently protected by their PPE when responding to incidents

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2 | ESTA-Z

Companies Company Name

Page No

Company Name

Page No

Company Name

Page No

Company Name

Page No

AA SORT..................................................................32

Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service ........................5

Land Rover ...............................................................32

Red One Limited .......................................................6

Aireshelta ..................................................................33

Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service..6, 35

Lec Medical ..............................................................48

Rennicks UK ............................................................49

Airwave Solutions ......................................................9

Dorset Fire and Rescue Service................................9

Leicestershire Police..................................................5

Alexandra workwear ................................................42

Duplex Corporate Communications Ltd.................6

Leicestershire SAR ..................................................28

Aligned Assets ............................................................4

DuPont Personal Protection ...................................43

LHD Group ..............................................................39

Ambition 2014..........................................................10

East Midlands Ambulance Service.........................37

Life Connections 2014.............................................10

Armadillo Merino ....................................................44

East of England Ambulance Service ......................37

Lincolnshire Police....................................................5

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service..............................5

Association of Ambulance Chief Executives...........4

Emergency Planning College..................................13

Lowland Rescue .......................................................28

Skills for Justice..........................................................4

Association of Chief Police Officers.............4, 17, 38

Environment Agency.........................................25, 32

Lyon Equipment Ltd.........................................31, 50

Somerset County Council........................................35

Avon Fire and Rescue Service ..................................9

Essex SAR .................................................................28

Maritime and Coastguard Agency............................9

Balcan Engineering Ltd ..........................................36

South East Coast Ambulance Service ......................5

Excelerate Technology ...............................................6

Ballyclare Limited ...................................................39

FC Media Ltd...........................................................52


Fibrelight Developments Limited ...........................6

Bond Air Services.......................................................9

The Fire Service College .........................................13

Bristol Uniforms ......................................................47

FireFit .......................................................................20

British Heart Foundation........................................20

FLIR Systems Inc ....................................................48

British Red Cross .....................................................33

Flood Forecasting Centre........................................25

British Transport Police ....................................13, 38

Ford .............................................................................4

Brother ......................................................................48

Gwent Police...............................................................4

Cambridgeshire SAR ...............................................28 Capita...........................................................................9

HAAGEN Fire Training Products .........................48

Rosenbauer................................................................47 Royal Life Saving Society .......................................36

Mayor's Office for Policing and Crime ............19, 38

Royal National Lifeboat Institution ..................5, 28

South Wales Police .....................................................4

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service ......................15 South Yorkshire Police ..............................................9 Merseyside Police.....................................................15 Met Office .................................................................25

SP Services..........................................................32, 46

Metropolitan Police ...........................................19, 38

Supacat ......................................................................50

Midlands Air Ambulance..........................................9

Surrey Fire and Rescue Service ..............................33

Mölnlycke Health Care............................................49


Mountain Rescue England and Wales ...................37

Tracerlite ...................................................................46

MSA Safety ...............................................................44 United Kingdom Border Agency...........................38 National Ambulance Resilience Unit ..............13, 37

CFOA National Resilience Ltd ..............................23

Haix – Schuhe Produktions- und Vertriebs GmbH ...................................................44

Cheshire Constabulary...............................................9

Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service ......................37

North East Ambulance Service...........................5, 37

Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service ........................6, 9

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service..................47

North Fire plc...........................................................47

Welsh Ambulance Service.........................................4

Chief Fire Officers' Association..............4, 20, 23, 25

HM Coastguard ........................................................13

North West Ambulance Service................................9

West Mercia Police...................................................17

Civil Nuclear Constabulary.....................................13

Home Office................................................................6

Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service ...........4

West Midlands SAR.................................................28

Cleveland Fire Brigade ..............................................9

Humberside Fire and Rescue Service ....................24

CM Specialist Vehicles...............................................6

Humberside Police.....................................................9

College of Policing ...................................................13


Counter Terror Expo 2014.......................................10

Irish Ambulance Service ...........................................5

CQC Limited ..............................................................6

Isle of Wight NHS Primary Care Trust....................9

Critical Healthcare.....................................................5

Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme .......................3, 4, 13

PETZL ......................................................................50

Kent SAR ..................................................................28

Police Scotland ...........................................................4

Department for Communities and Local Government ...............................................23


Police Service of Northern Ireland...................18, 37

YDS Boots.................................................................46

Derbyshire Constabulary ..........................................5

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service ......................20

Professional Clothing Show....................................10

Yorkshire Ambulance Service.................................37

Company Name

Company Name

Company Name

Niton Equipment Ltd..............................................46

Northamptonshire Police......................................4, 5

University of Bath....................................................20 VUE CCTV.................................................................5

Whitby & District Fishing

Northern Diver.........................................................28

Industry Training School ......................................9

Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service............37

Wiltshire Fire and Rescue Service ...........................9

Nottinghamshire Police.............................................5

Wood & Douglas ......................................................49

Peli Products.............................................................49 Woodall Nicholson Group.........................................6

DEFRA................................................................24, 28

Woodhead MRT .......................................................37

Advertisers Company Name

Page No

Page No

Page No

Page No

Airwave Solutions Ltd.................................OFC, 12

CFOA (National Resilience) Ltd ..........................16

Lyon Equipment Limited........................................7

Supacat Ltd .............................................................16

AMBITION 2014....................................................30


Duplex Corporate Communications Ltd..............21


Armadillo Merino...................................................45

Excelerate Technology Ltd ............26, 27, 31, 35, 47

North Fire plc .........................................................11

Ballyclare Limited ..................................................45

Goliath Footwear (YDS Boots)..............................40

Primetech UK Ltd..................................................22

BeaverFit .................................................................21

HAAGEN Fire Training Products..........................8

RSG Engineering Limited.....................................30

British ACPO 2014 .................................................34

Haix – Schuhe Produktions- und

Security and Policing 2014 ....................................11

University of Leicester.............................................8 VectorCommand .....................................................14 Vimpex Limited......................................................40

British Red Cross....................................................29

Vertriebs GmbH..................................................43

SP Services (UK) Ltd ........................................OBC

Wm Sugden & Sons Ltd ........................................45

Collins Nets Ltd......................................................30

Life Connections 2014.........................................IBC

Strongs Plastic Products Ltd.................................19

Zodiac MILPRO UK Ltd......................................29

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ISSN 1472-1090 Date: February 2014

Editor: David J. Holden MEng(Hons) Twitter: @999editor Advertisement Manager: David Brown Advertisement Sales: Carol Fox Office & Events Manager: Lesley Stevenson Marketing Manager: Emma Nicholls Circulation: Christine Knoll

Joint Managing Directors: David Brown David Holden Published by

Robert Denholm House, Bletchingley Road Nutfield, Surrey RH1 4HW Tel: 01737 824010 Fax: 01737 824011 e-mail: www: Distribution: EMERGENCY SERVICES TIMES is free of charge to officers and managers who are buyers or specifiers actively involved in the procurement of equipment or services within the emergency response industry and based in the UK and Irish Republic. All other categories of reader are invited to subscribe at £130.00 to UK addresses and £165.00 overseas. Single copy price £25.00 including post and packing. The articles within Emergency Services Times are copyright and are the property of the publisher Broden Media Limited and cannot be reproduced in any media form without permission of the publisher. Application should be made in writing. Reprints of articles and advertisements are available, allow 28 days for delivery. PDF pages are available by email at £20.00 (+VAT) per page (€32.50, $33). Prices on application to the publisher. Printed by Manor Creative Tel: 01323 514400 Studio work by Keystrokes, Shoreham by Sea, West Sussex Tel: 01273 453300

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Flooding highlights importance of improved joint working at major incidents Words: David Jervis, JESIP Senior Communications Advisor. Events of major disaster and tragedy, including terrorist acts, lone gunman attacks and plane crashes, are comparatively rare in this country. However one insidious type of disaster is gaining in frequency and blighting the lives of many thousands – often again and again. That is, of course, flooding.

management of a crisis develops. The need to improve joint working between the emergency services in a number of aspects, including inter-agency communication, was clearly shown in the Pollock Report. Lessons had not always been learned after major incidents.

Parts of the UK have been under water for over two months now and some areas have endured the highest rainfall in over 200 years. Lives have been devastated.

JESIP exists to fill those gaps, to ensure that those lessons are learned so more lives are saved and less people suffer harm.

In the October 2013 report by Dr Kevin Pollock, which reviews lessons that should have been learned from major incidents since 1986, three of the last eight events he looked at were floods – in Boscastle, Carlisle and Hull.

The need for JESIP was underlined further by a report commissioned from Skills for Justice, which showed glaringly through an extensive survey that joint training and exercising by the three services was badly needed. (See page 4)

Flooding and extreme weather now seems to be a permanent fixture in the lives of many and on our TV news screens.

The reports by Dr Pollock and Skills for Justice can be found on the JESIP website ( where you will be able to find all you need to know about the programme including a short, introductory film featuring the Home Secretary.

The emergency services, together with colleagues in the many Category 1 and 2 responder organisations, have been working tirelessly to save lives, reduce harm to people and property and facilitate a speedy and smooth return to normality. Some situations have required a national response where services find themselves working with colleagues from outside their areas under mutual aid agreements. JESIP gathers momentum

It is therefore more than timely that the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme (JESIP) has hit the road running in 2014 and gathering momentum across the country. This Government-supported initiative by the three blue-light emergency services has created a huge training programme designed to improve further the way ambulance, police and fire and rescue services work together in the early stages of the response to a major incident. In fact, JESIP is the largest and most ambitious joint training programme ever undertaken by the 105 blue light services. While JESIP is all about those early stages in responding to major incidents, it is anticipated that the improvement in communication and mutual understanding will have a positive impact as the

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Training delivered

Areas first to deliver the JESIP training were West Yorkshire and Norfolk combined with Suffolk. West Midlands and Kent soon followed with many other areas hot on their heels. Those being trained are personnel who are likely to be operational commanders in the early stages of a major incident. Separate courses are being conducted for tactical commanders. Many thousands will have been trained by September this year. A further course for control room staff is currently being developed, as are e-learning courses for all emergency service operational staff and a wider awareness package for Cat 1 and 2 responders. Planning for what follows JESIP when the programme ends in September is well advanced. Legacy arrangements will ensure that training continues, exposing all operational emergency service staff and Cat 1 and 2 responders to JESIP training, either faceto-face or by e-learning. For further information on JESIP training and JESIP principles go to page 13.

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The plan to merge Northamptonshire’s police and fire and rescue service into the UK’s first integrated emergency service has been awarded £620,000 to help make the project a reality. Police and Crime Commissioner Adam Simmonds announced proposals last year, and now the Home Office has given the grant, as part of the Police Innovation Fund, to help pay for the first 12 months of a four-year project, which could see the organisations share properties, services, training and fleet maintenance.

Gazetteer specialist Aligned Assets has announced both South Wales Police and Gwent Police as the latest customers of its AddressBase Premium compatible Symphony Bluelight corporate gazetteer management system. South Wales Police is an established user of the Niche Records Management System and, following a decision by Gwent Police to adopt the same system, groundbreaking work has been undertaken to create a single common Niche platform, hosted by South Wales Police, and accessible to both forces. The Symphony Bluelight Gazetteer, which sits at the heart of the system, will give the two forces complete control over the address data they use.

The Welsh Ambulance Service has invested more than £450,000 in two command support units, which will be dispatched to major incidents, such as large-scale flooding, chemical incidents and serious transport collisions. Each unit, which can accommodate up to five staff, acts as a base for incident commanders, who can then manage multiple resources at the site of an incident, freeing control rooms to continue managing day-to-day operations. A satellite dish on the roof allows for access to critical trust databases and websites, as well as the latest news via live satellite TV. Vehicles also come complete with an awning to provide a sheltered area for briefing staff.

Ford has won the first contract to supply vehicles to Police Scotland. The service recently placed its first vehicle order comprising 124 Ford Focus and 58 Ford Transit Custom models, boosting its total fleet size to 3500.

Blue light services agree future collaboration The Chief Fire Officers’ Association (CFOA), the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives (AACE) and the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) have worked together to agree a number of key principles regarding future collaboration as a professional response to the changing financial climate in order to secure public health, safety and wellbeing. Joint working across the services is not a new concept; the services have been working closely together to explore collaboration and integration

Paul Fuller, President, CFOA

in order to provide a better service to the public for many years. For example, the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme (JESIP) is well established and looking at how services can work together at serious and major incidents and this collaborative work will continue. All three organisations are keen to support innovative approaches to service delivery .

is nothing new to our three organisations and now that we have agreed a key set of principles around further collaboration we can continue to build on the good examples already in place. In doing so we must ensure that new areas of collaboration are fully evaluated so that we can determine which of those are sensible, workable and truly deliver benefits for our patients and the public.”

Paul Fuller, President, CFOA, said, “I am delighted that the three services have come together to agree a number of common areas where we can work together to deliver our key objectives of improving public health, safety and wellbeing. “Fire and rescue services face significant financial challenges and it is clear that working closely together will deliver more efficient and effective emergency response services.”

Lynne Owens, National Policing Lead for Uniformed Operations, ACPO, said, “It is good to be able to make our shared position on these things public. It is important to be clear that close working is necessary for reasons of efficiency and to protect the public.” The Government is expected to release a response to Sir Ken Knight’s review of Fire and Rescue Services in the near future, which will include its views on wider blue light collaboration. AACE, ACPO and CFOA will respond to the white paper in due course.

Martin Flaherty OBE, Managing Director, AACE, said, “Joint working

Call for more joint training for emergency workers Blue light emergency workers should take part in more joint training, according to a new report. A survey by Skills for Justice in partnership with the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme (JESIP) has highlighted the lack of joint training opportunities are preventing the police, fire and rescue and ambulance services from working together as effectively as possible. And while 79 percent of the 1923 emergency service employees questioned said their organisation was interoperable with other emergency services in their area, 95 percent said a lack of joint training was a barrier to effective interoperability. As well as taking place infrequently, joint training opportunities are unevenly distributed between the various levels of command within the emergency services. Strategic leads are much more likely to receive joint training with 61 percent of these ‘gold commanders’ undertaking joint training at least once a year, compared to just 50 percent of ‘silver’ tactical workers and 22 percent of ‘bronze’ operational colleagues.

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Staff working for the ambulance service are more likely to get joint training opportunities with 17 percent taking part every few months compared to nine percent of fire and rescue and seven percent of police staff. Some 56 percent of those surveyed also feel that learning from complex and major incidents is not shared between other agencies and services and 95 percent of respondents thought that a move to a single joint decision making model would support interoperability. The report’s authors are now recommending nationally-developed and funded joint training opportunities should be provided for responders, particularly for those working in ‘bronze’ operational roles. They also recommend standardising joint decision making and intelligence gathering models, as well as national funding for equipment procurement. The report also recommends that a national interactive collaboration tool could be developed. This would be aimed at supporting the development of collaborative learning programmes to ensure that the needs of

the three emergency services are met. Skills for Justice CEO Alan Woods said, “It’s clear from our continuous work with the police and fire and rescue services, and knowledge of the ambulance service, that personnel are trained extensively to do their jobs. We understand the time and resource constraints that joint training and exercising bring but we know that this education is most beneficial when it provides personal contact with responders from other services and includes practical elements that allow assumptions and equipment to be tested.” The research was conducted as part of Skills for Justice’s ongoing work to support JESIP, which has been established to bring about changes at an operational level that lead to the emergency services working together more effectively at major incidents. The project has received co-investment from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills through the Employer Investment Fund.

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Four forces agree First Shannon class lifeboat to form regional welcomed at Dungeness specialist policing service Four East Midlands police forces have agreed to form a single regional approach to provide specialist services including search teams, armed response units, dog sections and roads policing officers. Police and Crime Commissioners and Chief Constables from Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire have approved a region-wide Operational Support (OS) service, which will significantly increase the number of officers each force can call upon for specialist assistance as and when required. The forces, which already collaborate in many areas of policing, have selected a Senior Management Team (SMT) of officers from participating forces to lead the service when it goes live on 31 March.

Shannon class lifeboat the Jock and Annie Slater

The first of the Royal National Lifeboat Institution’s (RNLI) newest class of lifeboat, the Shannon, arrived at Dungeness lifeboat station in Kent on 21 February 2014. The Shannon is the first RNLI allweather lifeboat to be powered by water jets instead of propellers, making it the most agile all-weather lifeboat in the charity’s fleet. The lifeboat’s water jets not only ensure

Credit: RNLI/Nigel Millard

it is the RNLI’s most manoeuvrable all-weather lifeboat, but they also allow the Shannon to reach casualties in harder to reach places and in shallower waters. Capable of 25 knots, the Shannon is 50 percent faster than the lifeboats it will replace – meaning casualties will be reached quicker.

Derbyshire plans for shared headquarters could bring benefits

Chief Constable Neil Rhodes, Lincolnshire Police.

Chief Constable Neil Rhodes of Lincolnshire Police, who oversees specialist operations in the region, said, “While each of our individual forces has its own issues and areas of risk that we need to find local solutions to, it does not mean we have to address those issues in isolation and that is very largely what police collaboration is about. We have historically invoked mutual aid agreements to call on support from neighbouring forces when required, but this single regional structure will give us substantially more flexibility and resources than the old arrangements.” Assistant Chief Constables from each of the four forces will now prepare detailed plans for how the four key areas of operational support policing – command and control, public order, armed policing, strategic roads policing – will be managed.

Derbyshire Constabulary and Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service are working together to look at the possibility of a new, shared headquarters. Plans for the new HQ, which are at an early stage, would be subject to planning permission and would be built on the current police headquarters site in Ripley. Design consultants are currently working with both organisations to develop a detailed plan for a cost effective and sustainable building fit for modern policing and fire and rescue service provision. Both organisations currently have old HQ buildings that are fragmented, and have increasing maintenance and heating costs that are no longer suitable for costeffective and collaborative working. The joint venture could bring mutual benefits including sharing construction and maintenance costs. Director of Finance for Derbyshire Constabulary Terry Neaves said, “Even in these tough times it is prudent to invest to achieve savings for the future to enable us to deliver the best possible service for the people of Derbyshire. We have planned for the need to replace buildings and intend that the majority of the cost of the new building will be met by money we have saved from our budget in previous years and should not

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add any further strain to our current budget. “By sharing the new building with our colleagues in Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service it will allow us to share the costs of construction and maintenance. We will also benefit from being able to work more closely with them.” Joy Smith, Deputy Chief Executive, Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service, said, “A joint headquarters would enable improvement opportunities identified around support services within our recent consultation document ‘Transforming Service Delivery for 2022 and Beyond’. Furthermore, it would assist in fostering further close working with our colleagues in the police, which was a recommendation that featured in the recent consultation feedback from our communities. “The cost of our share of the new headquarters would be primarily met through the sale of our current HQ site, along with sourcing of government transformation grants for such joint blue light initiatives where possible and use of ‘one-off’ funds already saved from the budget in previous years to enable investment in the future of the service.”

South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Foundation Trust (SECAmb) has submitted a planning application to create a purpose built Make Ready Centre in Polegate. Within the Make Ready system specialist teams of staff are responsible for regularly deepcleaning and swabbing vehicles for the presence of microorganisms including MRSA and CDiff. They also restock ambulances to a standardised specification, checking and servicing equipment on a regular basis. To reduce the risk of vehicle breakdowns, on-site vehicle maintenance experts are also onhand to undertake routine checks and maintenance. If approved, the new centre will also provide modern training and meeting facilities, and should be operational by early 2015.

A decision on the future location of fire controls in Scotland was taken at a meeting of the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service (SFRS) Board on 30 January. Following a robust discussion to examine the proposals the Board agreed that Edinburgh and Dundee would join Johnstone as the three controls for Scotland. This decision comes as the service signals its strategic intent to reduce from the present number of eight controls inherited from the legacy brigades, which merged to form a national organisation in April of last year. The implementation of these plans is expected to take three to five years.

Critical Healthcare, the Kilbeggan based company which provides a comprehensive range of emergency medical products and services to ambulance providers, fire and rescue services and the pre-hospital market in Ireland, the UK and Scandinavia, has been awarded a nationwide contract with the Irish Ambulance Service. The contract is worth in the region of €5m over a 36-month period and involves providing a managed solution for the purchase and supply of emergency medical supplies and patient consumable products for approximately 100 ambulance stations throughout Ireland on behalf of the HSE.

North East Ambulance Service has installed a complete solution by VUE CCTV on its fleet of 110 vehicles. Since using the system from 2009, the service has seen its accident rates drop significantly from 518 to 275 in 2011. In 2012, with fewer vehicles in its fleet, the number of accidents fell to 142. Four integrated cameras capture high quality footage that has been beneficial, not just in reducing traffic collisions, but also protecting staff by deterring antisocial behaviour from the public.

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2014 is a very special year for communication expert Icom, as it marks the 50th anniversary of the founding of ICOM Inc. Founded in 1954 by Tokuzo Inoue the company has grown into a world renowned manufacturer of business radio, amateur radio, marine radio, aviation radio, navigation products and communications receivers. The company is located in Osaka, Japan and sells in over 80 countries.

Excelerate and Cheshire FRS unveil exciting new command vehicle

Duplex Corporate Communications Ltd has become the latest distributor of the ClearTel range of voice products. Working together with ClearTel, Duplex will look to offer ClearTel’s bespoke voice critical products to mobile radio and phone users in the UK and European markets.

Coachbuilding expert Woodall Nicholson Group has announced the launch of CM Specialist Vehicles. Evolving from the long-established specialist vehicles division at Coleman Milne and with respected industry expert Graham Clow firmly established in the driving seat, the new brand has been structured to deliver the highest standard bespoke vehicle solutions with a steadfast commitment to the emergency services sector. Joining Graham’s team at CM Specialist Vehicles will be Mark Catley who brings his unparalleled experience and skills from Kinetic Specialist Vehicles.

Fibrelight Developments Limited (FDL) and CQC Limited have announced an agreement between the two companies covering the future development, production, sales and marketing of Fibrelight products. FDL has developed a number of products based on its Fibrelight construction of webbings with reinforcing rods and tubes, which include assault ladders, recovery cradles, emergency ladders and solid rod and sectional stretchers. CQC has provided manufacturing support since 2009. The agreement will look to increase the global exposure of the equipment as introduced by FDL and expand the customer base into new territories and markets.

Red One Limited, a wholly owned trading company of Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service, has been accepted as a full member of the Fire Industry Association (FIA). With the company’s key focus on the provision of specialist fire, rescue and safety training and support services to industry and commerce, developing a close working relationship with the FIA enables the company to maintain a high awareness of potential legislative changes within the UK fire sector, which in turn enables the company to develop and provide the most upto-date fire and safety courses to its customers.

Duplex to distribute ClearTel voice products

A front view of Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service’s new Command and Control Unit.

Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service has joined forces with satellite communications market leader Excelerate Technology to deliver a new command and control vehicle to the region. The vehicle, once the community roadshow vehicle, has undergone a complete transformation and is now a response unit that will enhance the way the service deal with incidents. Steve Barnes, Group Manager at Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, said, “This is a really exciting addition to our fleet that will provide a greater level of control and coordination at incidents. We spent a lot of time looking at the issues we had in the past with our systems and what

other services were using. This helped us develop something that will be quicker to deploy and more effective at providing tactical and strategic support to the crews and officers at the incident ground.” The new vehicle features a full range of Excelerate products and applications including: 3G and 4G capability; enhanced ICT systems; multi-agency briefing areas; polemounted and body-worn cameras; and satellite communications. The vehicle also operates the Command Support System incident management software from VectorCommand.

Home Office’s £20m reward for police innovation Every police force in England and Wales will receive a share of a £20m Home Office fund for projects aimed at transforming policing. Investment in body-worn cameras, joint working between police and the fire and rescue service and using technology to improve efficiency were three of the key themes emerging from the scheme. Successful funding bids were also received for proposals to raise awareness of child exploitation, develop responses to organised crime, work closely with mental health professionals and colocate services with local councils. Policing Minister Damian Green said, “This government’s approach to policing has been radical and forward thinking. I am hugely encouraged that every single police force has shown the same attitude in taking this opportunity to develop new

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ideas and ways of working. “We have some exciting projects in this year’s round, and I am looking forward to seeing the results. Plus, we have a further £50m worth of funding, which will be made available for innovation projects in 2014/15. “By encouraging forces to work together and embrace new technology, we can continue to improve policing and increase efficiency in years to come.” The Police Innovation Fund will be established from 2014/15 and will be worth up to £50m a year. However, ahead of its full year of operation, the Home Office has made a precursor fund of £20m available to police and crime commissioners in 2013/14. Each of the 43 police forces in England and Wales was successful with at least one of the bids they submitted.

Duplex’s historical business focus has been the supply of noise cancelling telephony products into voice critical environments, giving Duplex the experience in supplying the correct solution for the right environment. Technical expertise ClearTel is a UK based manufacturer with the technical expertise to design and manufacture voice related products, with its main expertise in reducing background noise. With years of technical experience in the area of noise cancellation ClearTel is able to solve most noise related problems. The company has manufactured products for both vehicular and office based use. All products are robust and designed for rugged environments and heavy-handed users.

The ClearTel range of mobile despatcher units are made using steel enclosures ensuring breakages are kept to a minimum and can be supplied with either gooseneck microphones, handsets, headsets or fist microphones. The latest version of the despatcher products can also be supplied with a voice recorder ensuring all conversations are captured for playback at any point with the additional option of connecting to Airwave radio or smartphone. Legacy equipment To ensure connectivity, ClearTel is also able to supply all its products with the correct connectors for legacy equipment where required.

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Police forces benefit Partnership will improve safety at sea by delivering MCA course from a shared organisational support solution South Yorkshire Police and Humberside Police have gone live on a shared organisational support solution supplied by Capita’s Secure Resource Solutions business and implemented on the Oracle Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) application. In a contract worth £1.7m over seven years, the new system will streamline the two forces’ IT solution and help drive efficiency. Humberside Police is a longstanding user of Capita’s Origin applications and similarly South Yorkshire Police has used the Oracle ERP solution for 16 years, but under the new contract the forces will move towards a collaborative HR, finance, payroll and duty management platform, which will result in significant savings for both forces and encourage best practice. The programme, managed by Capita, is being implemented in four phases and is expected to be completed and fully operational by the end of 2015 Nigel Hiller, Finance Director of South Yorkshire Police, said, “Shared services are the logical answer to the current pressure police forces are facing to cut costs and improve efficiency, while at the same time maintaining our frontline services. Working with Capita, Oracle and Humberside Police, our shared solution will allow us to do just that.” Phil Goatley, Assistant Chief Officer (Support) for Humberside Police, said, “We are all excited about the new potential for service improvement and cost reduction that this project brings to both forces. We must, in the context of an extending and deepening financial challenge, seek solutions for joining up services that enable our people to multi-skill and be flexible. This is just such an ambitious shared enterprise, being delivered to tight timescales for which the partnership with Capita and Oracle is an important one.” Capita Secure Resource Solutions has also recently announced a new contract to provide North Yorkshire Police with an organisational support solution for HR, training, and duty management. Worth up to £1.25m over five years, the contract means Capita is now providing organisational support solutions to all four police forces across the Yorkshire region.

Airwave has worked with the Isle of Wight NHS Primary Care Trust to deliver an end user engagement programme to their paramedics and ambulance crews. As part of the radio terminal refresh programme within ambulance trusts in England, users on the Isle of Wight were the first to receive the new Sepura STP 9000 radio terminals in August 2013. The trust has 130 users using the Airwave Network: 56 handheld terminals (two in every frontline vehicle; and one on each of the transport patient service and rapid response vehicles).

Ian Hayton, Cleveland Fire Brigade Risk Management.

Cleveland Fire Brigade’s Risk Management Service will play an important part in improving safety for people working at sea thanks to a new partnership with Whitby & District Fishing Industry Training School. The brigade’s community interest company (CIC) and the training school are working together to deliver a Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) STCW-95 Fire Prevention and Fire-Fighting course. The course will cover personal survival techniques, fire prevention and fighting, emergency situations, evacuation procedures, sea survival, first aid and personal safety. Demand is already high with some courses throughout 2014 fully booked so additional dates are being added. Cleveland Fire Brigade is the first fire authority in the country to set up

a CIC to provide a safety service to the private sector as an innovative way to generate income and help to safeguard the fire and rescue service. It provides consultancy, risk assessment, emergency planning and response in addition to training in order to protect personnel, assets, local communities and prevent disruption to production. All profits from the company are reinvested back into community projects that improve safety for thousands of families in the Tees area. Chief Fire Officer Ian Hayton said, “We are delighted that our Risk Management Service is winning an increasing number of important contracts across the UK and is well ahead of its targets. We are now looking to Europe and the Middle East.”

Blue light staff share facilities at Emergency Services Hub Poynton Fire Station has been transformed into a new emergency service’s hub. Staff from Cheshire Constabulary and North West Ambulance Service have joined firefighters based at the station in a bid to create a more efficient service. Chief Fire Officer Paul Hancock, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service, said, “Shared sites such as this bring our people, equipment and expertise together and build stronger relationships that will benefit the surrounding communities and each of our three organisations. This facility sits at the heart of the town and is a true community asset – I hope that the people of Poynton will be reassured by the sight of our three logos placed side by side here for the years to come.” The fire station was officially unveiled as an emergency response hub at a special ceremony in January.

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Avon Fire and Rescue Service has announced plans to build three new fire stations, a new headquarters building in Keynsham and carry out a major expansion of a fourth existing fire station. CFO Kevin Pearson said, “Taking an ‘invest to save’ approach we are using money we have in reserve and borrowing to deliver these improvements. They will result in no reduction in our operational response standards, no reduction in the quality of vehicles and equipment we provide and no reduction in our community safety prevention activities.” The service will take a phased approach to the work over the next five years.

Elected members of the Dorset and Wiltshire and Swindon fire authorities have agreed to work towards developing a business case, paving the way for a potential combination of both fire authorities and services in two years’ time (April 2016). The current timetable is that a business case will be developed and consulted upon during the summer in readiness for a decision in September 2014. If approved locally and nationally, a single fire authority with a combined budget of around £55m will be established from April 2016. The new authority would then be the fourth largest combined fire authority in England (outside of London and the metropolitan centres).

Police and Crime Commissioner for Cheshire, John Dwyer, said, “All of the emergency services are feeling the pinch from the Government cuts. So finding ways to work together is advantageous to everyone, economically and logistically. This template of the blue light services working together is the first in Cheshire and I hope it’s something that we’ll see more and more of across the county.”

Midlands Air Ambulance has purchased outright the service’s first helicopter, which will be based at the RAF Cosford airbase in Shropshire. The service currently leases three EC135 helicopters from Bond Air Services, which are situated at RAF Cosford in Shropshire, Tatenhill in Staffordshire and Strensham in Worcestershire. It will be replacing the RAF Cosford aircraft with a new EC135T2e helicopter, which will be operational from March 2014.

Photo: CheshirePCC

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Life Connections 2014: the affordable CPD provider To date, six conference programmes and two study days have been confirmed for Life Connections 2014, which is again taking place at the Kettering Conference Centre in May. The current line up, many of which are CPD acredited, should be of interest to emergency personnel from all sectors. Wednesday 14 May Paramedic Practice Conference – with delegate rates starting from just £36 (including VAT), this conference, which includes topical presentations being given by Professor Sir Keith Porter, Mark Bloch and other well respected speakers, represents excellent value for money. Resuscitation Today Conference – following conversations held with several resuscitation officers, the 2014 programme, which includes presentations being given by Ken Spearpoint, Peter McKie and Professor Sten Rubertsson, will interest resuscitation officers countrywide and, with a delegate rate of just £48 (including VAT), this conference should attract a great deal of interest. MDT – Specialist Medic Conference – in order to provide flexibility and allow delegates the opportunity to attend more than one conference, this programme, which has been created by David Halliwell and Rob Clark, will be held on both days of the event and is sure to attract interest from medical specialists. Presentations include: ‘Accessing Patients in Tactical Situations’, ‘Remote Medicine and Telemedicine’ and many others being presented by speakers from both the UK and overseas. Delegate rates have been set at just £48 (including VAT). Outreach Rescue & Recovery Seminar – only 20 places are available for this specialist seminar, which is being presented by Outreach Rescue personnel. The delegate rate has been set at £60 (including VAT). Topics being covered include: ‘Introduction to

Ejection Trauma’, ‘Bariatric Evacuation issues’ and ‘Water Related Medical Evacuation’. Thursday 15 May Community First Responding – this conference programme should interest community first responders countrywide, has been created by SADS UK and The College of Paramedics and includes many relevant topics. The delegate rate has been set at just £42 (including VAT). MDT – Specialist Medic Conference – repeated from Wednesday. AoFA – First Aid Forward – a one-day workshop for all registered centres and training providers who wish to build their qualifications portfolio and expand their business. Delegate rates are £73 (including VAT) for members and £90 (including VAT) for non-members. EXMED Study Day – this ‘Difficult Airway’ course, which proved popular in 2013, will again be presented by EXMED personnel and, with only 16 delegate places available early booking is recommended as places will certainly go quickly. The delegate rate has been set at £72 (including VAT). Exhibition areas The above programmes offer tremendous scope for emergency personnel to maximise their Life Connections experience by attending one or more of the conferences/study days taking place over the two-day period (NB delegates can only attend one programme per day). All delegate rates include a bag/badge on arrival, lunch, tea/coffee etc, plus the opportunity to visit the exhibition areas where over 60 major companies will be displaying the latest equipment, supplies and technology currently available.

Ambition co-locates with CTX Ambition, now in its 4th edition, will be co-located with Counter Terror Expo 2014 (CTX) and Forensics Europe Expo at London’s Olympia from 29-30 April. The decision to co-locate the event reflects the growing importance of interoperability in maintaining resilience in the event of particularly untoward or challenging events, from natural disasters or terrorist attacks.

Ambition 2014 will host an exhibition of over 50 leading suppliers to the pre-hospital care market, as well as a free to attend workshop programme, live demonstrations and a one-day conference, Ambition 2014: Emergency Preparedness, Resilience and Response, held on 29 April 2014.

Professional Clothing Show re-locates to the NEC This year’s Professional Clothing Show will take place at the NEC from 1-2 April 2014. The event, which was previously held at Silverstone and the Ricoh Arena, is the only UK show dedicated entirely to the manufacture and supply of professional clothing, from cutting edge corporate wear to durable work wear and life-saving PPE (personal protective equipment).

How to buy Visitors to the Professional Clothing Show can discover hundreds of new lines, and for those new to the industry, can learn more about the ‘how to buy’ process; it’s an ideal place to source new products as well as offering a fantastic opportunity to network with peers and colleagues.

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Future Events Security and Policing 11-13 March FIVE Farnborough, Hampshire

British APCO 1-2 April Manchester Central

Professional Clothing Show 1-2 April NEC, Birmingham

Ambition 29-30 April Olympia, London

Counter Terror Expo 29-30 April, Olympia, London

Forensics Europe Expo 2014 29-30 April Olympia, London

Hazmat 2014 30 April – 1 May Eastwood Hall, Nottingham

The Public Sector Show 13 May ExCel, London

Fleet Safety Conference and Awards 5 June, St John’s Hotel, Solihull

Safety and Health Expo 17-19 June ExCel, London

Life Connections 14-15 May Kettering Conference Centre, Northamptonshire

Blue & Amber Light Fleet Exhibition 3-4 June The International Centre, Telford

Ambulex 9-10 July Ricoh Arena, Coventry

The Emergency Services Show 2014 24-25 September The NEC, Birmingham

INTERSCHUTZ 2015 8-13 June Hannover, Germany

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JESIP aims to develop ‘golden thread of interoperability’ in emergency services training JESIP, the Joint Emergency Services Interoperability Programme, exists solely to develop and ensure delivery of a massive training programme specifically designed to improve how emergency services work together in the early stages of major and complex incidents. Words: David Jervis, JESIP Senior Communications Advisor. “We aim to develop a golden thread of interoperability in the training from new recruits through to strategic commanders,” said Carl Daniels, JESIP Ambulance Senior User. To achieve this, JESIP has developed a variety of training products in partnership with the College of Policing, the Fire Service College, National Ambulance Resilience Unit (NARU) and the Emergency Planning College. Core training At first, JESIP was all about joint operational and tactical commander training by the three emergency services but recognition of the crucial support offered in major incidents by others resulted in a number of agencies, including HM Coastguard, British Transport Police and the Civil Nuclear Constabulary, being included in core training. And, a wider awareness package is being prepared for many others throughout the resilience community. The various JESIP training products and courses, illustrated in Figure 1, are aimed at embedding critical aspects of interoperability relevant to the individual’s role – for instance, the commander course focuses heavily on using the joint decision model whereas the awareness packages enforce the

use of the mnemonic METHANE (Figure 2) as the method of gaining shared situational awareness. Core principles “An incredible amount of work has been undertaken to create a suite of products in order to support and embed core principles of interoperability in business as usual for all relevant organisations and services. “It is important to remind everyone that this intensive training programme does not end in the autumn but will be maintained into the foreseeable future,” said Carl. Joint Doctrine The basis of all JESIP training is the agreed ‘Joint Doctrine: The Interoperability Framework’. This sets out what responders should do and how they should do it in a multi-agency working environment. It has been widely distributed and is available on the JESIP website.

Figure 2: All training packages enforce the use of the mnemonic METHANE as the method of gaining shared situational awareness.

One of the Joint Doctrine’s key elements is the ‘Principles for Joint Working’ (Figure 3). A major contribution to achieving the last principle – Shared Situational Awareness – as mentioned above, is through the use of the mnemonic METHANE (Figure 2).

Figure 1: JESIP training products and courses.

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Figure 3: Principles for Joint Working.

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Creating Merseyside’s Joint Control Centre The public disorder incidents, which occurred across most UK cities in 2011, provided tangible evidence of the benefits of close cooperation across Merseyside’s emergency services and local authority emergency planning teams. It was acknowledged at a local and national level that Merseyside managed and responded to the problems very well. Senior managers across the agencies agreed that the success of the approach was to a significant extent founded on the very close working arrangements at Silver and Gold Command level. Words: Dave Robinson, Merseyside Joint Control Centre Project Manager, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service. What also emerged in the aftermath of the public order incidents in the Summer of 2011 was that the existing Gold/Silver command suites at Merseyside Police headquarters were working at maximum capacity. A more protracted incident may have posed problems, which could not have been contained within the existing provision of accommodation, systems and staff. Merseyside Police was reviewing options for centralising and consolidating its contact/control centres. At the time, police were de-centralised across five locations.

Merseyside Fire and Rescue Authority was considering its options for a future control room after the failure of the Government’s national regional control room project. A co-terminus arrangement with the police service on Merseyside presented significant opportunities to improve the service to the public and secure efficiency savings. Finally, all services were very mindful of the need to improve interoperability and the creation of such a facility would surely provide the perfect springboard.

• Identified the best site (FRS HQ in Bootle) • Procured additional land for car parking • Agreed a Development Agreement (terms during the building phase) and a Tenancy Agreement (terms when building in occupation) • Agreed a Service Level Agreement for running costs • Procured Kier as building contractor through a tender via the North West Construction Hub • Developed site and building designs taking account of the stringent requirements for high levels of security and power and other infrastructure resilience and diversity • Secured planning permission • Engaged with stakeholders across both organisations to identify culture differences and explored ways of harmonising the workforces • Agreed and drafted a Security Protocol setting out steady-state management of security including staff vetting • Developed decant plans • Managed the on-going complex site and traffic management H&S issues during the build phase on a ‘live’ site • Agreed a significant capital investment in control room technology to support the new building (SAN H & ICCS for fire and DS3000 for police) and went to market for their supply.

Realistic objectives: challenging targets The first informal meeting to start talking about this exciting venture took place just before Christmas 2011. The Joint Control Centre (JCC) will be ready for service by this July (2014). In the intervening two and a half years the combined project team of fire/police and telent (MFRA outsourced ICT supplier) have been very busy, with highlights including: • Agreed a workable governance structure; fire as project lead and landlord when in steady state and police as tenants • Formed a joint project team • Drafted a Business Case

Under one roof A fundamental principle from the outset was that the absolute priority was to get the services together under one roof in as short a time as was possible, conducive with due diligence and safety. Consequently, it was imperative that the initial project scope was realistic and robust arrangements were in place to avoid scope-creep! Opportunities to share infrastructure were identified and exploited. This included provision of diverse power (generators, switchgear, UPS etc), structured cabling, Wi-Fi and telephony. There is no doubt that the future will bring further opportunities to explore integration in areas such as computer aided dispatch and integrated command and control

“All services were very mindful of the need to improve interoperability and the creation of such a facility would surely provide the perfect springboard.”

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systems. However, It was recognised that not all such development went without risk and the new shared centre will be the springboard for a range of shared service discussions and development. There was a need to keep the Phase One scope realistic. Phase Two of the project, once in steadystate operations, will allow innovation to be driven from the bottom upwards once staff, working alongside each other, start identifying how systems and procedures can be improved to enable them to deliver a better service to the public.

Fine tuning At the time of writing (early February) Merseyside police and fire are on the cusp of taking possession of the new JCC building with practical completion due on 10 March. As a design and build project we are still exploiting chances to fine tune certain aspects of the design and the on-going valueengineering approach. One of the local objectives for the JESIP consolidation exercise to be held on Merseyside in September this year will be a field test of the JCC. Principal officers from Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service and Merseyside Police are very keen to utilise the full functionality of the JCC under operational conditions and the JESIP exercises offers an excellent opportunity to realise all of the benefits of what is undoubtedly a first class facility. The final phase of migration and decant lies ahead of us before our intended go-live date of end-June 2014. We look forward to sharing a world class facility with our police partners, which will deliver a fantastic service to the whole of Merseyside.

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The business case for a national water cannon asset The Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) has been working with the Home Office to ensure that the police service has the tools it needs to protect the public and its officers. The Strategic Policing Requirement sets out the Home Secretary’s view of the national threats that the police must address and the appropriate national policing capabilities that are required to counter those threats. High-profile public disorder in recent years has led to a revision of the national public order framework. As part of this review, the need for water cannon to be available to support public order and public safety operations in England and Wales has been revisited. It was agreed by the Home Office Less Lethal Technology and Systems Strategic Board with the support of ACPO Chief Constables’ Council that a formal project would be implemented to consider this issue. Words: Chief Constable David Shaw, West Mercia Police & National Policing Lead for the Conflict Management Portfolio, ACPO. Water cannon have been used in Northern Ireland since the late 1990s. Originally water cannon were borrowed from the Belgium Police. However, in 2002 the decision was taken to purchase six Somati RCV9000 water cannon and they remain in service today. Water cannon have never been deployed in England, Scotland or Wales. This article is designed not to justify why the police service believes that water cannon should be available in England and Wales but to explain some of the considerations around operating models and likely deployment scenarios. When will water cannon be deployed and what assurances can be given to ensure that deployment will always be proportionate? Water cannon provide the ability to exert control from a distance and critically to provide a graduated and flexible application of force ranging from spray (or diffused mode) to forceful water jets. The mere presence of water cannon can have a deterrent effect and experience from Northern Ireland demonstrates that water cannon are often deployed without being employed. Water cannon, like this one shown at The Emergency Services Show 2011, have been used in Northern Ireland since the late 1990s.

Chief Constable David Shaw, West Mercia Police.

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Faced with the need to either protect vulnerable premises or disperse a crowd in a situation of serious public disorder, in the absence of the availability of water cannon tactics it is likely that police commanders would have to authorise alternative tactics (involving significant force), which may include Attenuated Energising Projectiles (AEP or more commonly known as baton rounds), batons, mounted officers, vehicle tactics, police dogs or even firearms. Water cannon deployment requires the authority of an officer of at least Assistant Chief Constable rank and consideration will always be given to the impact of deploying and using water cannon. National guidance states that water cannon can be used: when conventional methods of policing have been tried and failed or, because of the circumstances, are unlikely to succeed if tried; and in situations of serious public disorder where there is the potential for loss of life, serious injury or widespread destruction and where such action is likely to reduce that risk. Water cannon will therefore only be used to

respond to incidents of serious disorder or planned events where the intelligence picture suggests that serious disorder is likely. While water cannon can have a deterrent effect, it must also equally be understood that its presence alone can be inflammatory and public order commanders are specifically trained on the impact on crowd dynamics of using force. Water cannon have limited use in relation to ‘agile’ disorder such as the dynamic looting that was witnessed in August 2011. However, it is extremely effective at supporting police lines and creating distance between rival factions (for example between police and protestors or supporting police cordons designed to keep rival factions apart). In such circumstances, water cannon is known to reduce both subject and officer injuries. Water cannon will be a tactical option only for experienced and specifically trained public order commanders to use. Once authorised for deployment, the relevant Silver Commander would be authorised to deploy water cannon as they saw

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appropriate. In relation to planned events where the threat of serious disorder is assessed as high, it is likely that water cannon would be deployed to a suitable forward holding area from which it could be quickly deployed should the need arise. Attenuated Energy Projectiles (AEP) are authorised for use in the UK but have never been discharged in a public order environment outside of Northern Ireland. The deployment criteria for AEP are the same as those for water cannon however water cannon represents a lower level of force. The decision to deploy water cannon will apply the same level of scrutiny as AEP and it is anticipated that deployments will be unusual. How will Police and Crime Commissioners (PCCs) be involved in decisions relating to the use of water cannon? The decision to deploy water cannon is an operational matter. However it is anticipated that Chief Constables would always seek to engage with the PCC prior to using water cannon. Will the project board be creating strict guidelines for police forces on when and how water cannon should be used? National guidance (Authorised Professional Practice) already exists on the deployment of water cannon and tactics are well documented in the National Public Order Training Curriculum. Water cannon deployment in Northern Ireland is based on this guidance. While the decision to deploy will be a matter for individual forces, deployment will always be based on this national guidance and training. The existing tactics have recently been reviewed and remain fit for purpose. However, processes will be put in place to ensure that guidance remains current and that deployments in England and Wales are monitored and that learning from them prompts changes to guidance or the training curriculum as necessary. If water cannon is a national asset, how will it be deployed? It is anticipated that water cannon will be a national asset. It will only be deployed according to the prevailing threat assessment and it is anticipated that not all forces will require it. The deployment of water cannon in any given policing area would be an operational decision made by a Chief Officer in the relevant force. Each force

should therefore consider how they will communicate and engage with internal and external stakeholders and local communities. Discussions are still ongoing in relation to possible operating models and where water cannon will be based. Water cannon are capable of travelling at speeds comparable to an HGV and can be mobilised to support any spontaneous or planned policing activity. Deployment timescales would vary depending on the geographic location of any seats of disorder but it is envisaged that water cannon would be deployed in relation to any prolonged extension of spontaneous disorder.

“Experience from PSNI shows that the deployment of water cannon creates distance between individuals involved in disorder and police and drastically reduces the number of officer injuries.” What about deployment in Scotland? Police Scotland is represented on the National Water Cannon Project Board however it is acknowledged that approval from the Home Secretary would not cover Scotland. However, from an operational perspective, there would be no reason why water cannon could not be deployed in Scotland should the need arise. Why does England and Wales need its own water cannon? Could we not just borrow water cannon from PSNI as and when the need arises? The Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI) currently has six water cannon. In recent years, all six cannon have been deployed simultaneously in response to disorder. PSNI subject matter experts have made a significant contribution to the ongoing project and continue to support it. However, the

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Chief Constable of PSNI has stated that loaning water cannon to England and Wales could put his communities and staff at risk. How safe is water cannon and what are the medical implications of its use? The authorisation of any less lethal system by the Home Secretary takes into account the medical implications of its use. The Scientific Advisory Committee on the Medical Implications of Less Lethal Weapons (SACMILL) is an independent expert committee that has assessed the risk of injury associated with the use of water cannon and made recommendations regarding its use. It is anticipated that the Home Secretary will be approached in early 2014 in respect of water cannon authorisation. The authorisation itself is overarching and the Home Secretary is not subsequently required to authorise individual deployments. Responsibility for this would fall to individual Chief Constables. The term ‘less lethal’ (as opposed to non-lethal) accepts that water cannon are capable of causing serious injury or even death. There is a range of water cannon footage available online showing injuries caused by water cannon however it should be acknowledged that water cannon tactics, deployment criteria as well as the tolerance for disorder or protest vary significantly across the world. As stated above, deployment in England and Wales would be based on tactics employed over the past decade in Northern Ireland. There have been no recorded injuries in PSNI associated with water cannon use and PSNI staff recognise that water cannon presents a lower injury risk than AEP. It is accurate to say that water cannon fills an operational gap between AEP and more frequently used public order tactics (dog deployments, baton strikes, proactive shield tactics) but has the potential to be less injurious than all of these options. Experience from PSNI shows that the deployment of water cannon creates distance between individuals involved in disorder and police and drastically reduces the number of officer injuries. What level of force is used on people and how is this controlled and recorded? Water cannon are capable of being used in different modes based on the level of threat present. This ranges from ‘diffused mode’ (where water is sprayed in a mist) to full jets. Water cannon commanders are able to regulate the output pressure of the monitors (the technical name for the parts of the cannon that discharge the water) and the individual cannoneers have further control over water pressure and the amount of time that the monitor is deployed for. A system using cameras and CCTV monitors in the water cannon cab assists with aiming. Water cannon use will be recorded by a series of cameras and associated digital data recording equipment. This information will be preserved in accordance with evidential best practice and will be available to support judicial and complaint cases. What are the anticipated costs of the national asset and how will it be funded? Costs depend on the size of the cannon purchased and its technical specification and typically water cannon cost from £600,000 to £1m. It is anticipated that cannon would last between 25 and 30 years. Work is ongoing to explore all procurement options and establish revenue costs to

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ESTPROFILE | 19 ensure that any operating model represents value for money. A number of financial models will be presented to Chief Constables and Police and Crime Commissioners for consideration however it is hoped that forces would want to contribute proportionately to this national capability. The support of PCCs will be critical to any decisions taken in relation to funding arrangements for the national asset.* What are the training implications for staff? The College of Policing and National Policing Lead for Public Order are advising on trainingrelated matters. All public order trained staff will need to have at least awareness training regarding operating alongside water cannon. It is hoped that this can be incorporated into existing accreditation training with minimal impact and delivered through the existing regional training centres. Officers will be specifically trained in roles such as water cannon commander, driver and cannoneer. This bespoke training will be limited to a small pool of nationally trained operators and subject to continuous professional developments requirements. What engagement is taking place or proposed? The project board recognises the need for engagement regarding the introduction of water cannon and is cognisant of the findings of the London Assembly Police and Crime Committee report ‘Arming the Met’. The project board equally recognises that the Mayor of London and Police and Crime Commissioners will want to carry out their own engagement regarding water cannon and will support this process in any way that it can. Chief Constables have been asked to discuss water cannon with their respective Police and Crime Commissioners* and both the APCC and MOPAC

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Water cannon for London? Mayor of London Boris Johnson wrote to the Home Secretary on 6 January 2014 outlining his plans to make funding available to the Metropolitan Police to purchase water cannon to be available from the summer. The Home Secretary has previously declined to make funds available to the Met to purchase water cannon as a national asset. However, the Mayor has said that he is willing to provide the funding, following a short period of engagement with key stakeholders on its use. The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) held a series of London-based engagement events in late January / early February 2014 and with its support, it is possible Mayor of London Boris Johnson. that the Metropolitan Police Service could be in a position to purchase water cannon in February 2014. Authority to use water cannon will be required from the Home Secretary prior to any procurement processes being commenced and will be sought once the engagement has been completed. MOPAC has opened a public consultation on the proposal and is inviting comments by 28 February.

are represented on the project board. Papers have been previously submitted to the APCC General Meeting. The College of Policing has agreed to assist with the facilitation of a series of public engagement events and these will focus on the revised national public order framework rather than water cannon as an isolated issue. It is anticipated that these events will take the format of a number of scenariobased exercises involving key partners and local community members where the anticipated police

response to an escalating public order scenario will be explored. In anticipation of wider community and media interest, a comprehensive communications strategy has been written, which clarifies roles and responsibilities. *In early February, Police and Crime Commissioners from some of the largest police forces in England and Wales, including the West Midlands, Merseyside and Manchester, said they did not support plans for a national water cannon project.

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A ‘wake-up call’ for firefighter fitness As the Chair of FireFit, the Chief Fire Officers’ Association (CFOA) group established to focus upon the issues of firefighter fitness and wellbeing, I am often asked for my personal opinion on the highly topical question of age and fitness, typically expressed as ‘Do you think it’s right that firefighters should have to work operationally beyond the age of 55?’ I suspect a simple yes or no wouldn’t suffice and to be honest it shouldn’t. In many ways my answer is affected by context or the exact way in which the question is phrased. The response should be highly nuanced; in fact the absence of nuance in the form of reductionist ‘sound bites’ is currently delivering little more than rhetoric. So for what it’s worth, and you’ll be the judge, here is my answer. Words: Justin Johnston, Chair, CFOA’s FireFit Steering Group and Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service. Fire fighting is a highly skilled and highly demanding profession. It makes its demands in physically and mentally challenging environments at erratic intensities and at largely unpredictable times. As such a professional firefighter needs to be able to respond at a moment’s notice with a sharp mind and significant physical ability. This physical ability is all encompassing and has to be the right blend of strength, endurance, speed and flexibility. The discipline of fire fighting is the heptathlon of the emergency response world.

Testing activities to inform the current project work Photo: Gary Bankhead | CFOA’s FireFit Steering Group.

Of course this applies to all firefighters irrespective of duty system, whole-time or retained and, to a greater or lesser extent, to all roles. The excellent Dr Tony Williams report, which is often quoted but evidently not as frequently properly read, provides us with a really clear summary of where we are and it does so by comparing our workforce to the general population. But, we are not like the general population, or at least that’s what I would have thought. Unfortunately though – WE ARE. Firefighter age is increasing This is borne out in various studies including the latest research being undertaken in a partnership between FireFit and the University of Bath. Significantly this evidence is not simply from correlations in BMI (body mass index) but also health bio markers, disease prevalence and general poor lifestyle habits. It’s important to also note that this sits in a context where whole-time recruitment has stagnated for a number of years meaning the average firefighter is in their early forties with very few at the younger (naturally fitter) end of the spectrum which, with austerity, looks set to continue for some time. Without immediate intervention my opinion is we are on a collision course akin to an approaching asteroid. It’s 10 to 15 years distant but those looking through the telescope can see it; and simply

introducing regular fitness testing will not avert it. The key to reducing the impact will need to be far more wide-ranging and it must start now. Fitness decline in women Another seldom mentioned fact is the significantly disproportionate affect there will be on women firefighters. There is little historical data to go on here in terms of UK women firefighter longevity but from the Williams report we can see that the decline is predicted to be far starker. A ray of hope within the latest research seems to suggest that women firefighters already work hard to ensure they remain fit and many do so ahead of their male colleagues so the education to change is perhaps not required to affect change as much as it is with men, however there are other potential gender specific ageing related complications for women such as osteoporosis related to the menopause. Prepare for the future We need to see the Williams report and the current studies by the British Heart Foundation and the FireFit/Bath University as a wake up call. This information can help us to prepare for the future; it will give us the tools to plan interventions and health strategies and point us to where we need to do more work and understand interrelated issues such as the design of shift patterns or the compounding effects of workplace stress.

“Without immediate intervention my opinion is we are on a collision course akin to an approaching asteroid.” Currently just one percent of firefighters work on beyond the age of 55 and clearly at the moment they are electing to do so rather than being compelled, so they don’t really provide a useful comparator to what we can expect in the future. A better indicator sadly appears to be the general population so we need to act now and act radically if we want to avoid the worst of predictions. Cultural change needed Inevitably we will see more ill health retirements, more chronic diseases and more degenerative conditions as a greater proportion of the workforce

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Justin Johnston opening last October’s FireFit Conference. Photo: Gary Bankhead | CFOA’s FireFit Steering Group.

remains beyond the age of 55 in 10 to 15 years time. The size of this will be dependant on what measures we put in place now. As I said earlier, it will need to be much more than regular fitness testing. It will need to be a cultural change for firefighters and for fire and rescue services. Firefighters will need to consider fitness and lifestyle in a much more focused and serious way and so too fire and rescue services will need to think seriously about how they use and support their most valuable assets with the right shift patterns, health screening, health promotion, values, rehabilitation and culture. Of course many are already good at doing this but the evidence tells me we need to all be great at it. It’s time to have a serious holistic look at firefighter health and fitness that draws together emerging evidence of the factors that influence their long-term health prospects. This emerging work includes the prevalence of heart disease among firefighters, the increased risk of heart attacks related to fire fighting duties and long-term cumulative exposure to airborne pollutants, the impact of shift work and the general lifestyles of firefighters in the UK today. It’s only when we have such a rounded picture will we be able to say with any degree of certainty what the prognosis is and make coordinated and complementary decisions as to how best to address it. I look forward to receiving the final outcomes of the FireFit/University of Bath research as I believe it will help us to respond to some of the issues I have described, however I don’t think it will be the panacea; moreover, it will be the next steps of a long journey. The FireFit and University of Bath research project is due to present its initial report in April 2014.

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Show of strength from BeaverFit BeaverFit is a British manufacturer of strength and conditioning equipment. It designs, manufactures and distributes functional training equipment specific for strength and endurance development in all athletes, supplying equipment to Crossfit boxes nationwide, the British and US militaries, schools, colleges and universities, elite sports clubs, rehabilitation centres and much more. The company is now setting its sights on supplying the police, fire and rescue and ambulance services. Solid reputation BeaverFit has a solid reputation for innovation as it designs and manufactures all equipment at its own UK facility, using S355 (5mm) High Tensile British Steel. The company is often asked to create bespoke training equipment to meet very specific needs; especially within the military where it has to constantly adapt to meet the requirements of their multi-faceted operational needs, both now and in the future. In the commercial sector, BeaverFit may have to design around an odd-shaped building or difficult access that does not cater for conventional gym equipment, or clients may have an idea that fulfils their specific user requirements or ability levels. If you need specialist advice, BeaverFit can bring your ideas to life. Founder Tom Beaver is a dedicated athlete who has run over 30 marathons, 10 ultra marathons and

completed the world’s toughest triathlon – Enduroman’s Arch to Arc. Before his endurance days, Tom played rugby to an international level. Now, as Beaverfit’s Managing Director and Head Designer, he leads the team using his vast experience to create the best functional fitness equipment and training for the tactical athlete. BeaverFit proudly supplies the British Forces, including the Army, RAF, Royal Navy, Royal Marines and Special Forces. Last year it also supplied over 100 FOB Lockers for the US Marines, US Navy and Navy SEALS. On the back of this success, the company is now generating significant interest from other militaries across Europe and the Middle East, as well as in Asia and the Pacific Region. Joint workout BeaverFit products provide users with the ability to train multiple individuals around one piece of equipment. The Tactical Gym Box (TGB) provides the benefits of functional fitness training but in a highly transportable format. It is compact enough to fit inside a small car and can be set up and in use within five minutes of arrival. Designed for a squad of 8-12 people, the TGB combines a basic Functional Training Rig (FTR) with supporting gym equipment and is available in various packages to suit clients’ requirements. The TGB is fully inclusive of everything a squad needs to develop their functional fitness.

Specifically developed for the armed forces and designed to meet the needs of the British military, it is a fully functional and unique mobile gym.

BeaverFit is a British institution of strength and conditioning equipment. We design, manufacture and distribute functional training equipment specific for strength and endurance development in all athletes, supplying equipment to Crossfit boxes nationwide, the British and US Militaries, Schools, Colleges and Universities in the Educational sector, elite Sports Clubs, Rehabilitation centers and much more

The Commander is our best selling FTR and has proved very popular with everyone from individual fitness enthusiasts to the British Military. It is quick and easy to build, dismantle, store and transport and will fit in the back of a transit. The Commander is a key training resource in many facilities across the UK.

The BeaverFit Power Rack is heavy duty and made with 70x70mm box sections. It allows you to work as heavy as you dare without needing a spotter, but still giving you the confidence to work safety. The BeaverFitt Power rack is ideal for bench press, shoulder, squats, dead lifts, pull ups and much more The Power Rack comes with • High Tensile Safety Bars • J Pegs • Angled Chinning Bar All made in the UK

BeaverFits newest Functional Training Rig includes all our usual benefits plus our new integrated towers - ideal for more climb and olympic ring work. The Crusader takes all of our pop and push accessories.

BeaverFit LTD, The Old Mill Farm, Church Stretton, Shropshire, SY6 6NJ

Tel: 01694 352100


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Delivering excellence in support of National Resilience The UK Government’s aim is to ensure the country is strategically equipped to deal with major incidents and wide area emergencies such as natural disasters, eg flooding or alternatively terrorist attacks. The UK’s fire and rescue sector remains at the forefront in terms of emergency planning, response and recovery, and its CFOA National Resilience programme is designed to strengthen the nation’s ability to handle emergencies and crises through the delivery of a coordinated response to a range of serious, significant or catastrophic incidents that have wide spread impacts or are of national significance. Words: Brian Ward, National Resilience Officer, CFOA National Resilience. At the request of the Department for Communities and Local Government, the Chief Fire Officers’ Association (CFOA) formed CFOA National Resilience Ltd (CNR), a wholly owned subsidiary of the charitable body. In December 2013, the Chair of the National Resilience Board passed to Chief Fire Officer Dan Stephens, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, who holds the overall responsibility for providing the management and oversight of National Resilience and professional assurance to Central Government (through the National Resilience Board) that the UK fire and rescue service is, and continues to be, well equipped and trained to Humberside – December 2013. provide a range of specialist link through Local Resilience Fora, between capabilities designed to provide such a response. planning at the national level and the development of coordinated local emergency response plans that Professional advice underpin the maintenance and delivery of a CFOA National Resilience has unique insight national response capability for the UK. into the challenges facing fire and rescue services – it provides professional sector-led advice to Central Government Ministers through the Strategic Resilience Board cross mapping existing capability to current and emerging hazards ensuring that the UK fire and rescue service is always ready to respond. This approach is supported by a team of nationally seconded fire officers who provide a vital

“Recent events such as the flooding in the south west of England have seen all of this planning and preparation brought to bear to help protect the communities that we serve.”

CFO Dan Stephens, Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, Chair of the National Resilience Board.

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A centrally managed training programme ensures that personnel are equipped with the prerequisite skills to deploy, operate and manage specialist resources and during incidents, provide strategic advice on asset movements alongside specialist tactical and operational advice to frontline responders. Recent events such as the predicted tidal surge on the east coast and flooding in the south west of England have seen all of this planning and preparation brought to bear to help

protect the communities that we serve and future developments will ensure that this remains the case. Show support From 24-25 September, the National Exhibition Centre is once again welcoming visitors to The Emergency Services Show and CFOA National Resilience is extremely proud to be among those organisations supporting the event. The show provides a unique opportunity for CFOA National Resilience to engage with all aspects of the emergency service community and highlight the full range of activities to which UK fire and rescue services are now able to respond, as well as giving visitors a flavour of the equipment and vehicles currently at their disposal. In a broader sense this type of approach promotes ‘interoperability’ between responding agencies and ensures that the public receive the best possible response in times of need. The show offers a great opportunity to identify technological advancements and discuss bespoke solutions for future asset replacement with a broad spectrum of suppliers and manufacturers all under one roof. Over the course of the show, a team of experienced cross-capability officers representing CBRN(E) including Detection, Identification and Monitoring (DIM), urban search and rescue, high volume pumping, flood response and command and control will be located on Stand Z248 in Hall 18 and will be more than happy to discuss aspects of CFOA National Resilience, providing an insight into how the threats and challenges posed in today’s climate are addressed. The team will be accompanied by a USAR dog handler and his fourlegged counterpart and will have a range of capability equipment on display on the stand along with a static display outside, for those who wish to view a wider range of UK FRS resilience assets. We relish the opportunity to meet you and make new friends along the way. If you are at the show please come along and see us.

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Tidal surge tests east coast resilience The east coast tidal surge of December 2013 was worse than its notorious predecessor of 1953, which brought death and widespread devastation, but the impact was much less severe. Humberside Fire and Rescue Service played a key role in that success and here senior officers explain the background and tactics, which helped to defy the effects of nature and keep communities safe in the face of extreme and unpredictable conditions. In January 2013 Humberside’s Chief Fire Officer Richard Hannigan organised the launch of the East Coast Tidal Inundation Planning Framework, the culmination of several years’ work to improve the region’s resilience should a potentially catastrophic tidal surge occur. The Framework is the blueprint for how public authorities should work together during those conditions. Mr Hannigan remembers, “It was attended by Defra Minister Richard Benyon and I was able to say with confidence that if we suffered a tidal surge we were ready and could cope, never believing that within a year we would be put to the test.” That test came 10 months later, when a tidal surge hit parts of the coast and communities in the Humber estuary. The Framework was one part of a jigsaw, which had been in creation since the summer floods of 2007, following which shortcomings were identified in the way the authorities, including the fire and rescue service, were able to respond. Firefighters were found to lack both the equipment and training to deal with large area flooding. “We had a high volume pump but we didn’t have protection and training for firefighters to operate for protracted periods [In 2007],” said Mr Hannigan. “We found them working in standard fire kit for up to nine hours, knee deep in water. In winter we could not have sustained the operation.” The service’s command and control systems also experienced problems. Resources were mobilised as requested, with no prioritisation and, eight hours in, a desktop risk analysis was needed, resulting in resources being redeployed. The service spent several years making improvements, including better training and equipment. Firefighters now have better personal protection equipment and the service has a range of specialist equipment, including five powered boats. Some of the cost has been met externally, including a DEFRA grant, but the service has invested and will continue to invest in what is regarded as crucial area of its work, despite reducing budgets. That reflects the service’s ‘vision’ of providing a wider offering to the communities it serves than traditional fire and rescue services, including the prevention of flood damage. An early indication of the effectiveness of those changes came in the winter of 2012 when Beverley and Burton Fleming were both threatened by floods. December 2013 preparations Warnings for December’s tidal inundation were relatively late. A yellow warning, triggering no action beyond vigilance, was issued three days ahead, increased to an amber warning the following day. That prompted the formation of a tactical command group at police headquarters, with

Photo: Hull Daily Mail.

Humberside Fire and Rescue Service requesting additional high volume pumps and boat rescue teams. “On the morning of 5 December the flood warning became severe for the Humberside area. The area under greatest threat appeared to be parts of Grimsby and Cleethorpes and the Trent villages,” said Mr Hannigan. “In response to that, we contacted Humberside International Airport and asked to use their car park as a strategic holding area and they agreed. “Area Manager Phil Jackson was responsible for coordinating all resources and we put into being our spate conditions plan. That involves having operational commanders in geographical areas, in charge of a set of resources. “AM Jackson’s task was to assess the relative severity of areas affected and allocate incidents to operational commanders. His role was pivotal. “The Deputy Chief Officer, Dene Sanders, was deployed to strategic command group at Clough Road Police Station in Hull and, as the Chief Fire Officer, I was in overall command of fire and rescue resources. “At 15.00hrs it was clear the tidal surge was going to be bigger than anyone had seen in the Humberside area since 1953. Evacuations were carried out in parts of Grimsby and Cleethorpes and the Trent villages.”

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Tidal inundation The first flooding reports emerged unexpectedly at Bridlington, where no flooding was forecasted, with up to four feet of water in some areas. “Then we had reports of Hornsea suffering flooding. Fifteen minutes later a caravan site in Kilnsea was cut off by rising tides,” said Mr Hannigan. “It was disconcerting to see the tidal surge unfolding down the east coast and we braced ourselves for the forecasted flooding in Grimsby and Cleethorpes. “Much to everybody’s surprise we began to receive reports of the Humber overtopping sea defences in Hull. This had not been forecasted. One early report was that 300 cars were afloat in a car park in a low laying part of Hull. Another was that a riverside restaurant was up to the ground floor windows in water. So we rapidly had to assess the relative risk to Hull and Grimsby and decided where to deploy resources. “We turned and deployed towards Hull and parts of the East Riding. As the surge continued we began to get reports on both the north and south banks of the Humber, up to the Humber Bridge. “Finally the surge reached the River Trent and began to overtop around the Trent villages. We prioritised our resources according to life risk,” he said. During three hours of high water, 181 people

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ESTSEVERE WEATHER | 25 were rescued. The water receded quickly after the tide turned. Effective communication A further inundation expected the following morning did not happen, because the wind had eased. Deputy Chief Fire Officer Dene Sanders, who will take over as Chief Fire Officer from 1 April 2014, was at Strategic Command Group, which operated from Humberside Police’s Clough Road Police station and involved all the principle public services. He said, “We had 40 minutes’ notice of the tidal surge overtopping in Hull, that is not a lot of time. To warn people the area was going to flood we used both traditional and social media. There was no time to evacuate and we advised people to get onto the first floor. “We had reports from Kingston Communications (Hull’s telecommunications provider) that they could lose the 999 system because the central exchange became vulnerable. We had to deploy resources very quickly to keep it safe, although there were contingencies in place. “There were reports that a gas line going through the village of Paull had shifted but that turned out not to be such a problem, though we had contemplated deploying staff there.” Safety warnings The incident with most potential for tragedy was a report of three people missing from a jetty on the River Trent but they were found safe and well following a search. There was also concern for the welfare of those who were seen, apparently fascinated, out watching the waves coming in as the inundation grew, resulting in safety warnings from the service.

“In 1953 over 130 people died during the tidal surge. In 2013, nobody died. That is testament to better sea defences, better planning, better multi-agency working and better equipment.” Effective communication was a vital part of the service’s response to changing risks for the public as the surge developed. The Corporate Communication team played a critical role in warning and informing the public as part of the media cell at strategic command, relaying information directly to the public, via Twitter, Facebook and its own website, as well as using traditional methods by keeping the media briefed. The success of that strategy can be measured in internet traffic, with the service’s Facebook followers trebling to almost 5000 in the space of 24 hours, with 107,000 views of updated advice on the site. New control room facilities were created in 2013, going live only days before the surge. Changes meant more call handlers could be accommodated and different parts of the command team had the space to work. Area manager Jackson said, “We had recently opened our re-launched control suite. It was the first time it was really tested and it worked very well.”

When it became clear there would be no second inundation, it left the fire and rescue service clear to start helping affected communities get back to normal. That work involved a multi-agency operation to pump out seawater trapped behind defences on the south bank of the Humber, which had been overtopped. Group Manager Paul McCourt was involved in coordinating that operation, which was completed quickly due to the use of resources from three organisations working together. Valuable lessons learned The response to the surge was regarded as a success for Humberside Fire and Rescue Service and the other bodies involved; valuable lessons were learned. Among the key changes will be an improvement in communications between Strategic Command Group and service headquarters, using live screens rather than telephone calls. There were also no live images available, so those in command could not actually see the conditions to which they were responding. Good planning and flexibility, which allowed resources to be moved to meet unexpected threats, were among the keys to that success. “In 1953 over 130 people died during the tidal surge. In 2013, nobody died. That is testament to better sea defences, better planning, better multiagency working and better equipment.” “I would like to pay tribute to the staff of Humberside Fire and Rescue Service who performed magnificently and also the Local Resilience Forum who planned so well and operated so effectively together,” said CFO Hannigan.

Focus on coastal flood forecasting Many of you will already be familiar with the Flood Forecasting Centre (FFC) – the successful working partnership between the Environment Agency and Met Office that specialises in providing professional emergency responders with flood risk guidance. At the forefront of forecasting science, the FFC produces risk-based guidance of the likelihood of flooding and the potential impacts. The centre provides routine guidance that gives a five-day outlook by county for England and Wales. The approach is the same whether it is flooding from rivers, the sea, surface water or groundwater – the four natural flood sources – and even when they are all happening at once. “In early December we played a key role in the lead up to and during one of the largest coastal floods for 60 years,” explained Dr Crystal Moore, FFC Head of Centre. The event Dr Moore refers to is the coastal flood of 5/6 December 2013 when an Atlantic storm combined with high spring tides and a lowpressure system. The result was a series of surges starting on the west coast followed by the east and south coasts. “We had already experienced a less severe surge on the east coast in early October, which had helped us fine tune our coastal forecasting and how we communicate the risk to our customers. So, to

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be able to use that learning so soon after the October surge meant that we had vastly improved visuals to help convey both the areas at risk and the scale of that risk. In the early December coastal flood 2800km of coastline were affected, and this had the potential to spread emergency resources very thinly.” Working in partnership Another key learning opportunity during 5/6 December was the location of a liaison officer from the Chief Fire Officers’ Association in the FFC overnight. “This was the first time we had worked jointly in this way and it was really helpful to us and the fire service to be able to exchange forecast and impact information with each other,” explained Dr Moore.

The FFC Flood Guidance Statement complements the Met Office National Severe Weather Warning Service and the Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales local flood warnings giving a complete (as possible) picture for forecast flood risk. There is a jointly produced suite of materials on these related products for emergency responders – quick guides, e-learning, users guides, training presentations, case study learning summaries and more. Registered users can download the resources from the Flood Forecasting Centre library on the Met Office Hazard Manager system. For more information contact the FFC on 0300 12345 01 or e-mail:

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Rescue teams respond to the New Year storms Lowland Rescue teams across the country proved that there is more to their training than just missing-person search during the New Year storms. Teams from many counties were involved in flood awareness and rescue work as part of their relationships with county councils, police and fire and rescue services. All teams prepared their members with a general alert, aware that the intense weather patterns would mean increased levels of danger for the public and members. They also acted as information points for the public via social media streams.

Hands-on response Leicestershire SAR were called out 13 times over four days to assist with road closures, safety marshalling and vehicle recovery. And members from Surrey SAR managed door-to-door welfare checks on those most vulnerable residents, and made themselves available for flood response in the badly hit county. Cambridgeshire SAR consulted on the major incident plan for the River Nene, which came within one-inch of bursting its banks. And a very hands-on response from Buckinghamshire SAR saw over 500 sand bags filled and placed in vulnerable residents’ properties. Flood Rescue teams from Essex SAR, Kent SAR and West Midlands SAR were all involved in responding to storm surges in the east of England with boat and foot-teams sent to help. West Midlands SAR also sent a team down to Exeter as part of a DEFRA response in the area.

Civil contingency responses Lowland Rescue now comprises 31 regional SAR teams – each formed to serve a Police Service area – and many units also provide trained members for civil contingency responses. Members do not receive any compensation for their time and teams

receive no governmental funding (with the exception of DEFRA grants, which have been awarded to some teams to fund the purchase of water safety equipment). Lowland Rescue provides a national

infrastructure for missing-person search and rescue response as part of the official UKSAR framework, alongside Mountain Rescue, Cave Rescue, the RNLI and others.

Supplier ensures volunteers are geared up for response Recently Craig McColl, Northern Diver’s fire and rescue sales specialist, recognised one of his clients in a rescue situation on BBC News. The client in question was Norfolk and Suffolk 4x4 response, which is a volunteer group that assists the emergency services, NHS and councils as and when they are called out. Considering the work Norfolk and Suffolk 4x4 response does is voluntary, Northern Diver is thrilled to supply the team with equipment and fully supports its cause. According to Jim Whiteside, Chairman of Norfolk and Suffolk 4x4 response, the team was involved in flood rescue operations amid the largest storm surge to hit the East Anglian coast for over 60 years. Braving such treacherous conditions on a voluntary basis makes their efforts all the more laudable. Clearly then it is imperative that their kit is up to the job. The volunteers were fully equipped by Northern Diver, with kit including the Responder drysuit, constructed from a lightweight, reinforced membrane material. The company was pleased to hear from the volunteers that its gear was perfect for their needs, making Northern Diver’s side of

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Photo: Norfolk and Suffolk 4x4 Response.

the job all the more rewarding. The company is always keen to receive feedback on its products from clients as part of its ongoing product development. Whatever the elements throw at its clients, Northern Diver needs to ensure they are prepared.

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Specialist training for storm damage clean up After a series of headline making storms that have caused damage and disruption across the UK, Lyon Equipment Ltd is asking emergency services teams to look at its latest training courses in specialist techniques. Lyon’s collaboration with leading UK arboriculture trainers TREEPARTNER has enabled it to offer a range of courses directly aimed at those who have to deal with storm damaged trees on embankments or cuttings, or clear fell to gain access over steep ground. These environments are a heady mix of unstable ground, ‘unrated’ natural anchors, dense scrub, suspended or tensioned timber, steep drops and powered cutting tools. Without appropriate training that integrates a carefully selected range of complementary skills from rope access, rescue and arboriculture then emergency access can be difficult and dangerous. The knowledge and experience that Lyon and TREEPARTNER have in these fields when combined can provide that training.

Trainees can then progress to the four-day FO1 – Felling of trees with a diameter at felling height up to 1.5 times the effective cutting length of the guide bar which introduces a range of felling and branch removal techniques and outlines ways to safely deal with hung up and leaning trees. It covers specialist felling techniques, branch removal methods, take down of hung up trees (including the set up and operation of hand winches) and pull lines. For those with the necessary experience, FO3 Safe management of uprooted, broken, leaning and Chainsaw maintenance Starting with the basics, the three-day T01, Chainsaw Maintenance and Basic Chainsaw Operation course aims to equip SAR personnel with the necessary skills to maintain chainsaws and carry out a range of cross cutting techniques safely and efficiently. This extended course addresses additional relevant maintenance skills not normally covered on standard courses and includes supplementary techniques for cross cutting timber with a diameter greater than the effective cutting length of the guide bar.

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hung up trees is for experienced operators wishing to understand the complexities of managing uprooted, broken, leaning and hung up trees. This intensive three-day course covers: chainsaw techniques for managing uprooted, broken, leaning and hung up trees; selection and inspection of a range of winch equipment; hand winch setup; operation for the management of uprooted, broken and hung up trees; and planning the felling sequence when managing multiple windblown sites. Unstable surfaces Complementary to these chainsaw and felling courses, and aimed at those who already have suitable training and experience in chainsaw use the ‘Safe Working with Tools on Steep and Unstable Surfaces using Rope Access Techniques’ course introduces a range of ground based access and protection techniques appropriate for those working in these difficult environments with powered hand tools.

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AA responds to winter rainfall and floods The heavy rains and floods which affected the south of England during December and January brought a massive increase in the number of flood related breakdowns dealt with by the AA. During those two months, the AA answered calls for help from over 2800 AA members who had come to grief in the floods. Many of those had driven through floodwater with the car juddering to a halt once they were out the other side, but nearly 700 were still stuck in the water when they phoned the AA for help.

Cars ruined John Seymour, National Manager for the AA’s flood response team (AA SORT), says, “We had our specialist team out most days between 20 December and the end of January. It’s a tragedy to see how many people have ruined sometimes almost new cars through not heeding the advice to stay out of floodwater. Unfortunately some have deliberately driven past ‘Road Closed’ signs and written the car off in the flood water that lay beyond. And they may have found their insurer not interested in meeting their claim because they’ve ignored a statutory instruction.” Two groups of drivers have been particularly vulnerable: drivers of 4x4 vehicles some of whom seem to have been under the impression that an off-road capability also means amphibious, and drivers of cars where the air intake is low down behind the front bumper, making the car highly susceptible to water ingestion into the engine. Among the many excuses that the AA has been faced with are ‘Oh I was just following SatNav’, and ‘The water was only two feet deep on the marker board so I thought I’d be ok’. And one

Dam effective

The AA’s flood related workload over the past two months.

driver who, when asked why the car had been driven into three feet of water, replied ‘Well, I didn’t know any other way home!’. In November, jointly with the Environment Agency, the AA launched the ‘Floods Destroy, Be Prepared’ campaign, which highlighted the risks to drivers as well as home-owners. And the AA has continued to push out the safety messages via social and other media.

The Hydrosnake Barracade.

As the severe weather continues to batter the UK, the whole country is suffering as the waters rise, and the warnings turn into real disasters affecting real people. Of course, flooding is not a new phenomenon and has always affected us. And, as more houses are built on floodplains and other areas susceptible to flooding, the problem only stands to get worse. Sandbags have been the ‘portable’ floodwater barriers for over 100 years. But their drawbacks are striking. Sandbags are heavy, are difficult to dispose of, they leak and can trap harmful bacteria and toxins as water filters through them. Flood barrier Telford based medical equipment supplier SP Services is championing HydroSack and HydroSnake as the ideal solution to a critical problem. HydroSack and HydroSnake are the new, modern method to create a highly effective barrier to the threat of flood water in emergency situations and domestic and commercial properties. It is the perfect

replacement for the old, traditional sandbag, which is less effective, difficult to handle, labour intensive and a potential health hazard. Before use, each HydroSack or HydroSnake weighs less than 1kg and each pack contains the equivalent of six sandbags; when soaked with water before installation, each HydroSack or HydroSnake can absorb up to 20-litres of water. HydroSack contains a super absorbent polymer, which expands to hold up to 40 times its own weight – letting the water in but refusing to let the water out. When built into layers, a wall built from either HydroSack, HydroSnake or a combination of both, produces a highly effective barrier to flood water. Combined together HydroSack and HydroSnake can provide effective damming of large areas. Flooding is a problem that won’t go away, but with the right planning and preparation anyone can minimise the damage to their property, or damage to critical areas.

The AA’s Special Operations Response Team uses specially adapted Land Rover Defenders to operate in flooded areas. Crew are certified as Swiftwater Rescue Technicians under the DEFRA guidelines, and the team is registered with the FRSNCC as a national asset.

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Shelters support Help for families affected by storms, flooding and power cuts incident response around the world

Mobile incident command units, such as this vehicle from Surrey FRS, are using Aireshelta shelters to provide additional space for command teams.

Flooding in Doncaster, Yorkshire, Britain.

Teams of British Red Cross emergency response volunteers were called into action across the UK as storms brought widespread flooding to many regions. December saw storm surges in coastal areas of eastern England, and just weeks later more storms struck parts of southern England, north west Wales and Northern Ireland. Councils and emergency services faced huge pressures. In some areas whole communities were evacuated, and others had to be provided with emergency provisions. Across the UK, Red Cross volunteers were able to offer assistance as part of the voluntary sector response. Sandbags distributed In Northern Ireland, Red Cross volunteers and staff distributed sandbags to residents at risk of flooding in and around Belfast. During December’s storms, the Red Cross helped to set up and run seven rest centres for evacuees in Great Yarmouth. In Lincolnshire, plans were made to evacuate 18,000 properties and even the local Red Cross centre ended up two-feet-deep in water. As the floods took hold, 36 volunteers and staff set up three rest centres to help hundreds of residents – plus two dogs and a cat. At Rhyl in North Wales, where floodwater submerged entire streets in a matter of minutes, more than 400 people had to take refuge at a rest centre. A second rest centre was also set up in nearby Holywell. The Essex town of Jaywick was a particular

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Power cuts The Red Cross has also been providing support at rest centres in Suffolk and Kent. In Scotland, volunteers are supporting residents affected by power cuts. Simon Lewis, Head of Emergency Planning and Response, said, “Thousands of people have been thrown into chaos following these awful storms – but helping people in these situations is exactly what our volunteers and staff are trained to do. “People know they can depend on the Red Cross, and we’ll be there to help out until everyone is safely back in their own homes.”

The recent major flooding in Somerset and in other parts of the UK, as well as the war in Syria and the hurricane and storm surges in the Philippines, have demonstrated once again the need for emergency responders to have the capacity to support longterm operations. Responders dealing with emergencies and disasters need to begin operations as soon as they arrive at an incident, but they often also need extra accommodation capacity, requiring shelters that can be deployed quickly and maintained over the long-term, sometimes by nonspecialist personnel. Aireshelta, the UK-based world leader in the design, manufacture and supply of specialised inflatable shelters for emergency services and humanitarian relief organisations, is experiencing growing demand for its shelters in response to major emergencies and disasters. In the UK, Surrey Fire and Rescue Service has an Aireshelta shelter unit, which attaches to the side of its new mobile command unit, thereby expanding substantially the working area available to command staff. Aireshelta shelters are also involved in the new incident command vehicle project, along with vehicle builder Plastisol and communications integrator Primetech. Emergency and disaster missions typically cover diverse tasks, such as command, control and communications, medical care (in mobile hospital operating facilities, nursing wards and medical aid posts) and CBRNe decontamination, along with administrative and logistics tasks, and staff accommodation and feeding centres. Support for all of these tasks can be enhanced by the use of Aireshelta shelters, says the company. A major advantage of Aireshelta’s inflatable sealed beam construction is that shelters are very quick and easy to deploy. This method of support gives shelters strength and solidity, allowing semipermanent installations if required. Being inflatable, the units go up quickly once the air pump begins inflating the support beams. Sealed beam construction gives shelters from Aireshelta much greater strength in all weathers than flimsier shelter systems, and wide standing pads and side skirts provide strong anchoring. Velcro panels on the exterior walls allow signage to be placed on units for easy identification. Modular shelters can be linked together to expand capacity, thereby increasing working or storage areas, or allowing the setting up of mobile treatment processes.

Photo: Martin Hookway, British Red Cross.

concern due to the vulnerable nature of the communities living there. In all, 61 streets in Jaywick, covering hundreds of homes, were evacuated ahead of the storm surge. The Red Cross helped run two busy rest centres jointly equipped to hold up to 700 people. Thankfully the pre-fab homes survived to see another day. Brian Wingate, Emergency Response Manager, said, “Leaving your home can be incredibly stressful, especially in a situation like this when you don’t know what you may be going back to. It can be particularly distressing for the elderly and vulnerable. Our volunteers will be on hand as long as the rest centre remains open – providing hot drinks, meals, comfort and reassurance, as well as practical assistance such as dealing with insurance companies.”

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Vital support boat for flood-hit villagers Residents of the floodwater locked community of Muchelney in Somerset have been helped by a new support boat, which was provided by Somerset County Council and run by a crew from Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service. The flat-bottomed vessel was able to navigate sunken cars, trees and other underwater obstacles to reach the village of Muchelney from Huish Episcopi. It was mostly for ‘humanitarian’ use, with priority given to people with health or social care needs. The eight-seater vessel made three trips a day to and from the island taking food, medicines and other supplies. Residents were also able to use the service to get back to work and to shop.

to help people in their hours of need. He said, “We have seen many people hit very hard by these floods. They have been described as once in 100year floods but we have seen serious flooding now in the same areas for two years in a row. We are working hard to support people and communities as best we can while operating under our own very challenging financial situation.”

The council has thanked all the organisations, which have helped organise the support boat, including: The Canal and Rivers Trust, Bridgwater and Taunton Canal Volunteer Group; the Maritime Coastguard Agency; and The Wheelyboat Trust; plus Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service for operating the service.

Where space was available, it was also available to help take the half dozen children remaining in Muchelney to the mainland and a drop point just a few hundred metres from Huish Episcopi school. Council Cabinet member David Hall said the Council – which announced £50,000 funding for flooding hardship cases and also £200,000 for community flood relief projects – had stepped up

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Specifying effective equipment to improve water rescue accuracy Saving someone from drowning is all down to time. Can the person be reached before it’s too late? Here, John Rinfret, Chairman at Balcan Engineering, discusses how specifying superior equipment, capable of achieving faster, longer and more accurate water rescues, is essential for rescue teams across the country. Fire and rescue teams are called out to hundreds of life threatening water emergencies every day. From accidents in or around inland waters to coastal difficulties and even flooding disasters, the danger of drowning is never far away. However, with recent statistics from The Royal Life Saving Society (RLSS) identifying worryingly low accuracy rates for throw-bag rescue devices*, it seems that more must be done to improve the standard of emergency procedures. “When a victim is drowning they need to be reached quickly and safely,” says John. “Fatigue and currents can easily take their toll, which is why saving a life requires an immediate solution. “However, after reading the results from December’s RLSS Throw-Line Challenge**, I was shocked to see that a high percentage of emergency professionals fail to make successful first-time rescues – even at short distances. “Despite being called to more water incidents than ever before, it seems that emergency services teams are still unprepared to effectively carry out firstresponse procedures. This is a fact that must change,

not only to improve rescue figures, but also to prevent unnecessary drowning disasters. “Being prepared and capable of acting immediately for every eventuality is key. Luckily, there is a solution.” Tried and tested Used by first response and emergency services teams across the UK, the Balcan Emergency Life Line (BELL) is a tried and tested throw-line rescue device. Compact, reliable, accurate and lightweight, the BELL is perfect for emergency scenarios where time is of the essence. With a high-strength polypropylene line capable of reaching casualties up to 40m away from the shore, the BELL not only outreaches all other throw-line devices, but its overhand throwing action allows any user to accurately reach victims quickly and safely.

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Essential rescue kit Rethrowable, repackable and weighing just 250g, the device easily meets weight restrictions and is compact enough to be stored in any emergency vehicle. A disposable single-use unit is also available for ambulance and medic crews, where guaranteeing the highest hygiene standards is an essential requirement for rescue kit equipment. After trialling a 40RP model of the BELL at last year’s Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue Challenge, a representative from then service commented, “I found the device easy to use, rapid to deploy and I’m surprised just how far it went. I’d recommend using it in a rescue situation without a doubt!” During the trials, results of hitting the target and quickly making a rescue were high, with firefighters who had never used the device previously easily achieving fast and accurate results – reaching and rescuing dummy victims over 30m from the shore. Allocated NATO Stock Numbers (NSNs) by The Royal Navy, the BELL has been used worldwide to carry out fast and effective water rescues for over 40 years. By specifying these lines, emergency teams can be well prepared for every scenario and capable of performing life saving rescues easily and safely. * Source: ** Source: Emergency Services Times, December 2013

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Mountain Rescue Global award for rescue specialist England and Wales Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service’s Animal Rescue Manager Jim Green, appoints new based at Lyndhurst Fire Station, was presented with the Sheri Holmes Chairman Memorial Award for Large Animal Mountain Rescue England and Wales (MREW), the umbrella organisation for mountain search and rescue teams, has announced that Mike France will take over from David Allan as national Chairman from May 2014.

Photo: Adrian Ashworth |

Mike joined his local team, Woodhead MRT in the Peak District, at the age of 18 and has been involved in MREW on a national level for 17 years, most recently as Chairman of National Fundraising. “I intend to continue my local operational mountain rescue duties in parallel with the new role,” says Mike. “At the age of 61, I can’t beat a 25 year old to the top of the hill but that doesn’t mean to say I can’t get there. Mind you, I do tend to be back at base as search manager or incident controller! I think it’s important to me and to the membership of MREW that I continue to be involved on the practical side and aware of the challenges and issues that arise for MREW day to day.” Mike takes over at a time when the public profile of mountain rescue is high but he recognises that this brings additional pressures and responsibilities to maintain standards and reinforce the best of rescue. “I joined a voluntary rescue service many years ago and, as Chairman of MREW, I intend to continue this volunteering tradition,” he says. “Support from central government is welcome but that is no reason to become something others think we should be – we need to be in control of our own destiny.” Continued investments in specialist training and team insurances are also priorities for the future, ensuring that teams are left to focus on raising money for local equipment from their local communities and supporters.

Rescue Leadership and Excellence at a recent world conference in Adelaide, Australia. Experts at the International Large Animal Rescue Conference recognised Jim’s pioneering work in dealing with incidents involving horses and cattle. Jim said, “It was a real honour to be presented with this award and it is testament to the way the UK initiative is viewed by other international animal rescue experts. Large animals in distress pose different challenges to regular human rescue work and in Hampshire, the need to be better prepared has led to us being instrumental in leading on best practice in the UK. This award is recognition of all the hard work under-

Watch Manager Jim Green, Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service. Photo: Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service.

taken by our team in Hampshire.” A new Australasian Large Animal Rescue Standards Forum has now been established, with the aim to create national training standards and greater interface with government and community relating to animals in disasters. Jim has been asked to be part of the forum and continue assisting Australia in integrating animal rescue, as has been achieved in the UK.

Nottinghamshire names next CFO Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service’s new Chief Fire Officer will be John Buckley – who will take over from retiring Chief Fire Officer Frank Swann on 1 April 2014. John is the current Deputy Chief Fire Officer and was appointed as the new CFO at a meeting of the full fire authority on 13 December. Chief Fire Officer Frank Swann retires on 31 March 2014 after being NFRS’ Chief since early 2007 and there will now be a handover period between Frank and John. Assistant Chief Fire Officer Dave Horton will also retire later in 2014

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North East Ambulance Service Chief Executive Simon Featherstone has announced he is stepping down after 15 years with the service. Under his leadership, the ambulance service expanded through two mergers – firstly between Northumbria Ambulance and County Durham Ambulance services; and more recently with Teesside – creating an additional 1000 jobs and leading on innovations in urgent and emergency care that have been copied and rolled out across the rest of the country.

and, to ensure there is a smooth transition due to two senior officers retiring at a similar time, Area Manager Craig Parkin will be acting as a temporary Assistant Chief Fire Officer with immediate effect.

Ambulance service appoints new Chief Executive Dr Anthony Marsh has been appointed as the new Chief Executive of the East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust (EEAST). Dr Marsh, who is currently Chief Executive of West Midlands Ambulance Service Foundation Trust (WMAS), is being brought in to accelerate improvement in service delivery and performance and build on the foundations for longterm sustainability. He will combine his new role on secondment to EEAST while continuing to be in charge of WMAS. Dr Marsh said, “I am delighted to have been offered this opportunity to work with the staff in the East of England Ambulance Service. During my review I met many of the ambulance crews, control room staff as well as those who work in the support func-

Mike Shanahan, the Deputy Director of the National Ambulance Resilience Unit (NARU) for the past two years, has returned to Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust, following the completion of his two-year secondment. A mini-restructuring within the NARU Central Management Team will see the role’s responsibilities absorbed by the rest of the NARU team and it is expected that West Midlands Ambulance Service Assistant Chief Ambulance Officer Keith Prior, who remains the Director of NARU, will take a more active role in the day-to-day operations of the organisation.

Nottingham Paramedic Cherylene Camps is the first in East Midlands Ambulance Service (EMAS) to join a national panel to offer specialised advice on traumas. Cherylene, who has worked for EMAS for 16 years, will play a key role in developing spinal injury assessment and treatment as part of the NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) Guideline Development Group. She has vast experience both on the road and with the air ambulance, as well as being involved in educating her peers and paramedics of the future through lecturing at Sheffield Hallam University.

tions. The overwhelming message I got from them was wanting to make the service better for patients. I am absolutely determined to work with the staff to continue the improvements that have been started and take them to the next level. Dr Marsh, who received the Queen’s Ambulance Service Medal (QAM) in this year’s New Year’s Honours List, will be working four days a week at EEAST.

Northern Ireland’s Chief Constable Matt Baggott has announced his decision to retire from the post. Mr Baggott took up the job as head of the Police Service of Northern Ireland in August 2009 and his contract ends in September 2014. The appointment of a new Chief Constable is made by the Northern Ireland Policing Board and is subject to the approval of Justice Minister David Ford. The current Deputy Chief Constable Judith Gillespie is also due to leave her post, in March.

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NUMS heralds the start of a dynamic process for the future provision and supply of police uniform The National Uniform Managed Service (NUMS) project is about to significantly change the way that UK Police forces buy their uniform. This new project has been established to change the way that forces and other organisations approach the lifecycle procurement of uniform clothing. The NUMS project aims to significantly change the way in which the police and other organisations procure their uniform clothing. The NUMS Project team has been engaging with suppliers and stakeholders in advance of the initiation of procurement proceedings. This project is being led by the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS), Home Office and with input from key stakeholder groups. The MPS issued a Prior Information Notice, to enable NUMS to engage with the market to understand and explore the full potential of a set of nationally consolidated, centrally managed services to supply force specific/identifiable uniform and equipment. Suppliers were asked to participate in helping to revolutionise a key aspect of police visibility. Engage with potential bidders NUMS has engaged with police forces and the collaborating partners under the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO), Mayors’ Office for Policing and Crime (MOPAC) and the Home Office Collaborative Police Procurement Programme (CPPPB), including but not limited to police forces (Including British Transport Police (BTP) and United Kingdom Border Agency (UKBA)) in England and Wales. To date the project team has received 46 expressions of interest from forces and organisations wishing to take part. This is a first; with the Permanent Secretary describing NUMS as a new approach to uniform procurement and one which addresses a diverse and complex landscape. The main objective of the NUMS project has been to engage with potential bidders capable of managing the consistent, uninterrupted supply of a wide range of diverse uniform clothing and equipment products with which to contract. Over the past year, the NUMS team, with representation from ACPO, the MPS and Home Office, have conducted a number of high-level studies, working with both other public sector departments and private sector organisations. Data has been gathered to understand what strategic opportunities there are for the delivery of police uniforms – that data will form the basis of the project. Through significant communication efforts, the team has gauged reaction to the initiative and has sought to incorporate feedback, so that the design of the procurement initiative represents what is best for the Police Service, but also recognises the needs of the UK marketplace and suppliers. The data collection phase is ongoing and will be used to inform the contract specification and the baseline to measure success.

The Police Service is keen to ensure that the NUMS supplier acknowledges and adheres to their duty to ensure the integrity of its supply chain in accordance with the highest social and ethical standards and that for each tier of the supply chain there is a formal process to transparently maintain an up to date Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) management system. This system will also recognise the wider agenda of sustainability in terms of the social, economic and environmental impact of its own and its supplier operations. The NUMS supplier will be obliged to report centrally on Greenhouse Gas Emissions, resource consumption, waste disposal, social inclusion, diversity, community regeneration, working conditions, SME participation and skills promotion.

“Police forces should determine where the greatest benefits could be achieved through either standardisation or national procurement.” Managing a contract of this size is a considerable task for the Metropolitan Police, who will be the Contracting Authority and who will work closely with suppliers to see that uniform supply is managed responsibly, consistently and efficiently. In addition, a user group with representation from all forces is to be set up which will feed back to the Contracting Authority on issues of specification, supply and user engagement. Assistant Commissioner Simon Byrne said, “The MPS is leading on the procurement contract for the National Uniform Managed Service (NUMS), and look forward to helping towards the standardisation of uniform.” Savings to be made In March 2013 the National Audit Office reported that police forces had ‘a minimum of nine separate specifications for each of five common items of equipment used by police officers. Forces have also found it particularly hard to agree common specifications for uniform. If forces could replicate cost reductions achieved through standardising uniforms, as in the prison service, they could save around £2.6 million a year’.

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Bulk buying In September 2013, Chair of the Committee of Public Accounts, said, “Police forces pay widely varying prices for very similar items, which means money is being wasted. This is even the case where items are identical. It cannot be right that prices paid for the same type of high-visibility jacket varied by as much as 33 percent. With central funding being cut, police forces must ensure they get best value for money from procurement so that they can focus resources on fighting crime. Forces can make big savings through bulk buying of items, but have been unable to agree on the simple things, like how many pockets they should have on their uniforms. Greatest benefits “Recommendations were made and forces should determine where the greatest benefits could be achieved through either standardisation or national procurement. “NUMS will lead The Police Service into a very exciting and dynamic process for the future provision and supply of police uniform. Historically, due to the police landscape and other priorities uniform procurement can be fragmented and uncoordinated, with limited opportunity for national product development or standardisation of uniform support processes and the associated benefits that these methods can bring. This project gives us an opportunity to bring the police service completely up to date with other public and private sector organisations in their approach to the design, sourcing and supply of uniform clothing.” Standardisation and best practice Recently, several regions and project groups have made significant strides in changing the way uniform is procured, but this new national project has been launched to review the whole of the supply chain, processes and practises associated with uniform procurement and supply to end-user with a view to standardisation and best practice through output specifications. Having such a wide variety of police uniforms has long been recognised as highly undesirable and a sub-optimal use of resources. To ensure user satisfaction and get what is best for the service, a very diverse stakeholder group has been created as part of the project to ensure all interests can be reflected. The tendering process will begin shortly and the NUMS team looks forward to an exciting time ahead.

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Ballyclare gains strength in depth with Lion acquisition Ballyclare has acquired the Lion firefighter business in the UK from LHD Group as part of a planned strategy for growth, putting the company at the forefront of PPE development in the emergency services sector. The initiative consolidates Ballyclare’s position as a leading provider of protection for first responders and signals the company’s long-term commitment to the emergency services. The deal was sealed on 2 January 2014 and the expanded team will now focus on merging both businesses to create a stronger operation with a national UK network. Ballyclare will integrate Lion’s care and maintenance centres in Uxbridge and Livingston into its existing operations in Stockport and Barnsley, providing a nationally based service for emergency services across the country. The merged business now protects over 20,000 firefighters in the UK, including Scotland, the North East and West, Wales, the South East and Eastern Services, as well as Leicester, Oxfordshire and North Yorkshire fire and rescue services. It also provides specialised protective garments to 10 police forces, as well as Her Majesty’s Prisons.

“The deal makes Ballyclare one of the few specialists with the infrastructure and resources necessary to manage large, complex national contracts such as the forthcoming National Uniform Managed Service for police uniforms.” “We have always been committed to working in close partnership with customers across all emergency services, allowing us to fully understand their requirements and work together to develop solutions that will do the job effectively. It’s a longterm relationship based on mutual knowledge sharing that results in continuous improvement in protection for tomorrow’s front line responders. “We have created a strong UK business that gives

us a solid platform to expand further afield, building on the major contract won last year with the Malaysian Fire Service.” Knowledge and expertise Ballyclare has an enviable track record of developing protective clothing solutions for emergency workers that stretches across several decades. With that heritage comes an impressive depth of knowledge and expertise within the team. The company is proud that all of its garments are designed from scratch. It has been recognised for award winning designs that have over the years pushed the boundaries of innovation in protection and comfort. The ability to manufacture its own garments ensures that Ballyclare maintains rigorous quality controls throughout all of its processes. This is supported by the latest IT systems that give customers access to powerful reporting and analysis helping them to manage their PPE as efficiently as possible. The acquisition of the Lion UK business solidifies Ballyclare’s position as a major force in personal protective clothing with the skills, expertise and vision to deliver competitive solutions that are second to none.

Carlton Greener, Managing Director, Ballyclare Limited.

Strong reputation Carlton Greener, Managing Director, Ballyclare Limited, said, “Lion is a well known brand that, like Ballyclare, has a strong reputation for service and product quality. The integration of the Lion UK business creates unrivalled strength in depth with a wide range of skills and expertise across all of our operations. “The addition of Lion’s facilities in Uxbridge and Livingston extends our network across the country and will ensure that we maintain the highest standards of service for our customers. It makes Ballyclare one of the few specialists with the infrastructure and resources necessary to manage large, complex national contracts such as the forthcoming National Uniform Managed Service for police uniforms.” “Our focus remains on developing innovative protective clothing solutions that meet the specialist needs of modern day emergency service teams. We are excited at the opportunities that this merger brings in terms of future growth and enhancement of our products and services and are currently sharing that vision with our customers.

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Innovative, eye-catching protection TEXPORT®, the Salzburg-based clothing manufacturer, presented its latest product lines at the A+A trade exhibition, which welcomed over 60,000 visitors to Düsseldorf last November. Visitors to the company’s exhibition stand saw an abundance of innovative products and features on display, with two of the many highlights presented being the Fire Explorer and Fire Phoenix lines for fire and rescue services. The Fire Explorer line catches the eye with its technically sophisticated cut and innovative colour combinations previously unseen in fire and rescue service clothing. But the innovation offered in these models is not just in the way they look. Equipped with a shell made of TEXPORT®’s exclusive IB-TEX® fabric and the X-TREME® material structure, Fire Explorer meets the most stringent requirements currently placed on PPE. Ergonomics and fit In addition to their look, ergonomics and fit set the tone in developing the Fire Explorer models. Colour-contrasting stretch elements have been fitted to both the jacket and the trousers to yield a vast boost in freedom of movement. Highly ergonomic knee and elbow areas, along with their TEXPORT® features (Ergopad®, HPX System®, TEXPORT® Triple Fabric®, Airblocker® shoulder pad and vapour barrier) as highlights, produce a conclusive package consistently pushing the cutting edge of technology.

“TEXPORT® has invested a great deal of creativity and development time in designing the new model line.” In every detail, the Fire Explorer line displays the most stringent standards of slim-cut and ergonomic tailoring, coupled with a revolutionary athletic design. Fire Explorer sets new standards with its well-conceived and innovative features, whose design and functionality come together in an impressive overall look. A new system to adjust collar width by single-handed operation, a revamped pocket design and a new holder for the respirator-ID on the front panel are merely examples of the many different applications installed to optimise the assistance provided to

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The Fire Explorer line catches the eye with its technically sophisticated cut and innovative colour combinations.

Fire Explorer wearers in their work. The Fire Explorer model is available in the three new colour combinations gold/red, navy blue/gold or navy blue/red to match the sporty cut. The Explorer jacket also comes with the TEXPORT® belt systems, so with a choice of the Loop System (tunnel for an optional chest belt), the Drag System (belt system for rescue missions) or the Bear version with a combination of both systems. The Explorer trousers also accommodate a Drag System. Innovative shell weave Fire Explorer uses the innovative new IB-TEX® by TEXPORT® and IBENA® for its shell. IB- TEX® is a Nomex® premium material that sets new standards in its outstanding mechanical properties. Its ideal look is the finishing touch to the extreme tear resistance the material provides. TEXPORT® places its trust in X-TREME® for the Fire Explorer material structure. Combined with the IB-TEX® shell especially, this goes far beyond the limits of stress resilience previously seen in protective clothing.

that the company invested a great deal of creativity and development time in designing the new model line. And it has paid off in a highly functional suit with an impressive array of details. Optimisation in the position and usability of all grab straps, pockets and other applications on the suit has continued in line with a thorough revamp in style. Innovative width adjustment on the back of the jacket collar with single-hand operation helps wearers to quickly and easily adjust the fit. An additional pocket for the respirator-ID was fitted to the front panel. Moreover, Fire Phoenix comes with a redesigned radio pocket that easily accommodates an additional, compact digital radio. It goes without saying that Fire Phoenix also incorporates all the old favourites among the TEXPORT® highlights, including the HPX system (High Performance eXchange) for rapid replacement of the zip, the Ergopad®, vapour barriers, the textile reflective strip TEXPORT® Triple Fabric® or the Airblocker® shoulder pad. The elbow and knee areas were pre-formed according to ergonomic principles to ensure the best possible fit with the wearer’s body form. Applied, expansive stretch elements guarantee that wearers enjoy maximum freedom of movement during turnouts. Like the Fire Explorer, the Fire Phoenix is offered with the Drag, Loop and Bear belt systems and its material structure also trusts in TEXPORT®’s hardy X-TREME® composition. In terms of its shell, this is the first time that TEXPORT®’s exclusive PBI® NEO® fabric, produced only for TEXPORT® by the weavers from Ibena® following an intense period of joint development, has been incorporated in a collection. Fire Phoenix is also available with the upper material Nomex® Tough™ gold, likewise with the X-TREME® material composition.

Fire Phoenix PPE series The brawny and powerful look of the Fire Phoenix makes it an instant eyecatcher. But it is far more than just that. It offers a wealth of innovative features and a perfect fit in addition to its imposing look and the generous appearance of its cut. The brawny and powerful look of the Fire Friends of TEXPORT® Phoenix makes it an instant eye-catcher. will be unsurprised o learn

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A paramedic’s uniform must be fit for purpose The paramedic’s uniform is vitally important to the role of these medical professionals; it is essential for the uniform to look professional, offer the required level of protection, but also be comfortable for the long hours often worked in the industry. Essentially, the appearance of paramedics can impact the public’s perception of the profession and instil confidence in both the individual and the service they will receive at, what is likely to be, a distressing time. This is a tall order for one uniform, but essential for paramedics to perform effectively in what is a highly skilled and often difficult role. Words: Jill Emmanuel, Alexandra workwear The need to dress appropriately for work is something that every type of profession has to deal with, but where lives depend on a person’s ability to do their job well, such as that of a paramedic, the correct uniform is vital. It must give a level of protection in line with the potentially dangerous situations paramedics may encounter, while also being suitable to wear day-to-day. Therefore, as well as providing protection, the uniform must also allow for flexible movement, provide high visibility and allow the wearer to be easily identified, while protecting the wearer from the elements. The mere presence of a paramedic can immediately have a positive effect on an emergency situation. The paramedic brings a sense of relief and comfort to injured parties simply on sight – the green and yellow uniform instils a sense that help has arrived, as it is universally recognised. This can be essential when dealing with upset or scared patients because the uniform gives the paramedic a defined role as someone to trust.

“Introducing stab vests as a uniform requirement is one possible solution and has led to much debate, however many paramedics and others in the industry remain sceptical.” However, unfortunately paramedics cannot always rely on their presence to calm difficult situations. Paramedics can often find themselves first to arrive at an emergency situation, where a patient may have been hurt as a result of violence. In these instances paramedics can find themselves dealing with not only a patient, but also aggressive or scared members of the public and their uniform needs to be up to the task in these difficult situations. Protecting paramedics Worryingly, incidents where paramedics have been assaulted are on the rise. There has been a lot of statistics to support this and more recently, a Freedom of Information request has highlighted

the increase, reporting a 30 percent rise over the last two years – to an average of almost one per day (297 in 2012). In light of these figures, it is reasonable to question if the paramedics uniform is offering the right level of protection in these situations. Introducing stab vests as a uniform requirement is one possible solution and has led to much debate, however many paramedic’s and others in the industry remain sceptical. For paramedics, there is a common misconception that protective clothing, including stab vests: will be cumbersome; are presumed to be very heavy; may look confrontational; and are unpractical for everyday use. This, however, is no longer the case. Advances in protective clothing now mean that they are comfortable, lightweight and wearable along with the standard uniform. Covert protection is also available and when concealed under the standard uniform, offers protection without the wearer needing to worry about appearing confrontational. Although the number of knife attacks has increased in recent years, a paramedic’s risk of being attacked with a sharp object is far lower than that of being pushed, punched or kicked while on duty. Specialised stab vests, can make a huge difference in this instance too and will not only protect the wearer from a stabbing attack, but also from a ballistic attack (including blunt-force trauma). There is a growing recognition that all paramedics should be issued with their own

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individual stab vests. This may seem extreme and costly, but if the result is that more paramedics are fully protected then it will have to become a senior consideration. In the short-term, it is essential that where possible, protective wear is made available to all paramedics and that the uniforms supplied are regularly reviewed to ensure they are always fit for purpose. Debate on stab vest provision It is essential that the uniform meets the requirements of the role in the future, however that role may change. Manufacturers and distributors are constantly reviewing garments to ensure they meet these requirements. Simple measures to incorporate more durable fabrics and boots with safety caps, for example, show recognition about the importance of safety, but in order to become more responsive to dangerous situations, the debate on stab vest provision must reach conclusion. Ultimately, a paramedic’s uniform needs to support the wearer in their often difficult and potentially dangerous role. There’s no substitute for good medical care, but when dealing with people in what is usually a very stressful situation, creating a professional first impression is essential. By wearing a practical uniform that offers a high level of protection for unpredictable situations, paramedics will feel they are able to deliver the best possible care in the safest way possible. Patients too, will now feel comfortable that this can be achieved.

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DuPont combats counterfeit products DuPont is internationally renowned for its high-quality, intelligent flame resistant fibre, DuPont™ Nomex®. Incorporated into fabric for use by firefighters and industrial workers all over the world, Nomex® labelled garments are produced according to the highest standards using fabrics approved by DuPont and have become an integral part of keeping people protected at work. However, the importation and production of counterfeit and illegal products is becoming a serious concern not only for the business economy, but, most importantly, for the safety of the workers such goods place at risk.

To ensure the maximum protection of the wearer and combat the trade in counterfeit products, DuPont has developed the DuPont™ Nomex® Partner Programme, a carefully-selected network of spinners, weavers, knitters and garment manufacturers whose fabrics and garments are of the highest standard. All partners in the programme benefit from the technical expertise of DuPont and have access to the company’s product testing facilities, where the quality and performance of finished fabrics and garments can be closely monitored. In order to qualify for certification by DuPont, all fabrics must undergo rigorous testing to prove that they not only meet the standard quality criteria but also exceed them. Certified Nomex® fabrics are visible to the end-user through the distinctive Nomex® labelling programme, which DuPont actively encourages end users to look out for to ensure the compliance, performance and quality of products. A single label on the garment aids identification and provides customers with a quality mark from reputable suppliers they can trust to offer genuine products. Partners in the programme are all committed to using genuine DuPont material and to help remove unsafe garments from the market. While the goods are often unrecognisable from their legitimate counterparts, the quality and performance of counterfeit safety products could be significantly compromised and thus place users at risk.

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Flexible all- Gallet F1 XF fire helmet rounders for still ahead rescue work

The AIRPOWER® R91 model from HAIX®

The AIRPOWER® R91 model from HAIX® is a flexible work boot for everyday use. With a leg height of 19.5cm and its patented fast-lacing fit system, this boot combines the comfort of a mid-height boot with an optimum fit for daily use. Once the two-zone lace system has been adjusted, it’s a matter of stepping in, pulling on, fastening up and you’re ready to go. An alternative is the proven AIRPOWER® X1 model with classic lace-up system. A non-penetrable sole and, for the R91 model, an integrated instep protector provide protection, especially for technical operations. The integrated CROSSTECH membrane also prevents the penetration of body fluids such as blood.

Gallet launched the original F1 Helmet System in 1985, being the first manufacturer to introduce a Jet style, full coverage structural fire helmet and revolutionising firefighter head protection. Since then, this iconic product has been selected and used by more than 1.7 million firefighters in more than 80 countries. For almost 30 years, Gallet, which was acquired by MSA in 2002, has refined the F1 helmet design through innovation and expertise, offering several successful generations of market-leading helmets to firefighters around the world. MSA strengthened this commitment to the fire and rescue service last year by releasing the Gallet F1 XF, a fire helmet developed for firefighters with firefighters.

Benefiting from MSA’s unique expertise, the Gallet F1 XF is approved according to EN443:2008 for fire fighting in buildings and other structures. In addition, its face shield and ocular visor meet the EN14458 approvals. The Gallet F1 XF fire helmet is readily available in all continents to meet the toughest requirements of firefighters from around the globe, features include: a stylish, high temperature resistant shell, available in two sizes for a perfect fit for all users; a high temperature resistant face shield (clear or metal coated) with an extended coverage and field of vision; a padded, adjustable chinstrap with quick release buckle; and a selection of helmet-mounted headsets for enhanced communication capabilities.

Protection from the inside out The AIRPOWER® X1 model with classic lace-up system.

Pleasant foot climate Always included is the Sun Reflect system. Integrated colour pigments in the leather reflect the sun’s rays. The heating effect of direct sunlight is therefore reduced considerably. When combined with the HAIX® Climate System, the wearer can enjoy the most comfortable temperature possible inside the boot. Both models will ensure you are well equipped, even when wearing the boots for long periods. The Arch Support System developed by the longestablished company from Mainburg in Bavaria ensures optimum foot and joint support, thus relieving pressure on the entire musculoskeletal system.

No melt, no drip fabrics are essential in protecting officers from deep skin burns especially in public order situations. US Marines banned the use of synthetic base layers in 2006 because of the inherent risks from melting synthetics. Armadillo garments offer significant benefits over nylon and polypropylene garments because they don’t melt or drip, with inherent flame resistance up to 600°C without producing toxic fumes. Thermo-regulation Overheating and excess perspiration are a major issue under layers of PPE. Synthetic base layers make you sweat whereas Armadillo garments thermo-regulate helping to delay the onset of sweating by up to 50 percent, preserving valuable moisture while improving stamina with the added benefit of not stinking even after days of use! The sustainable and transparent supply chain used by Armadillo Merino® traces the merino fibre back to specific high-country sheep stations in New Zealand. Long term supply contracts with the merino growers guarantees the price, quality and source of the fibre while sustaining their rural

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communities. These growers have tremendous pride in knowing that their fibre is being used to protect officers operating throughout the world. Armadillo Merino® designs and manufactures next-to-skin clothing (head to toe), which is being used by elite teams operating in high-risk environments.

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R&D drives YDS Boots a perfect fit protection for PARAS’10 events Thanks to the filing of a large number of patents, Kermel, a market leader in the manufacture of meta-aramid fibres for flame and heat resistant protective clothing, is a key player on the safety at work market. Firefighters, police, the military and industry professionals choose Kermel for total protection. High visibility (EN471) Kermel® fabrics for high risk situations are all inherently non-flammable and feature chemical, electric arc, static, welding and UV protection. This is a giant leap forward in technology, combining high visibility colours (EN471) with inherent non-flammability (EN ISO 11612). This technology can also be combined with a membrane to offer the emergency services multiple levels of protection. It is widely recognised that the modern day firefighter requires specialised protective clothing for different hazard environments. London Fire Brigade is leading the way for specialist response capabilities and has equipped its 300+ urban search and response team with this Kermel option. The company has also launched a high technological barrier for a new generation of CBRN Combat suits. They have a significantly lighter weight and are more ergonomic, offering a very high level of protection at the same time. Kermel’s fabric range is the result of considerable research and development at the company – a process that is ongoing to ensure that it continues to deliver the most advanced fabrics for the protection of industrial, emergency service and military personnel.

Steve Hall, Sales and Marketing Director of YDS, says, “PARAS’10 is an excellent fit for the YDS Boots brand. We are thrilled to be part of something that has such military authenticity. We hope more people will get to learn about what YDS Boots has to offer whilst we actively promote the PARAS’10 events.” YDS Boots will be running a social media campaign in the run up to the PARAS’10 events where participants can enter competitions, see boot recommendations, get giveaways and receive other advice and tips about the events. The company will also be present at the PARAS’10 in Colchester on 18 May 2014, which is organised by the Parachute Regiment Charity RCN 1131977 and benefits soldiers and families. YDS Boots, the largest manufacturer of police and military footwear in Europe, is delighted to be named as the title sponsor of the PARAS’10 endurance events, which take place at military bases Colchester and Catterick during 2014. The authentic military event consists of a 10 mile running race and a TAB race, which must be run in military boots. As an established supplier of specialist footwear to uniformed services, including police and fire and rescue services, YDS Boots is building awareness of its military boot retail range available in the UK. The YDS Boots slogan and ethos ‘Step Forward’ is very compatible with the values of PARAS’10 ‘Stand by Go’ and makes for a very strong partnership in promoting the races and the brand.

Tracerlite now on duty in the UK Having been proven in the toughest environments, from mountainous terrain through deserts and sub tropical rain forest to the streets of major cities, Tracerlite has become the leading provider of duty footwear in Australia and New Zealand for police, prisons, emergency medical services and security personnel. The design team at Tracerlite is focused on duty boots that: provide function and fit for the user; will stand up to a very broad range of climatic conditions; meet the needs of the user and are built to last; use the best materials; are Eco friendly; and are manufactured to the highest quality control standards. Proven environmental credentials The European Eco-label promotes products that have low environmental impact during their production, are free from harmful chemicals and are durable, to limit the requirement of replacement products. It is intended as a tool to enable consumers to make informed choices. Tracerlite has proven its environmental credentials and is one of only a very few footwear manufacturers whose boots have been tested and

and that are all tested and certified to CEN ISO Standards. All of its boots are the lightest possible weight and feature: full grain leather uppers; Cambrelle moisture wicking liners; fully gusseted tongue; water resistant or water proof; 300 degree thermal slip resistant carbon outsole; compression moulded EVA midsole with composite shank; multi-directional toe traction; heel anchor zone; ladder grip zone; and fully gusseted side zips.

have passed EU Eco-Labelling at the UK Shoe and Allied Trades Research Association (SATRA) test centre. All of the company’s safety boots are CEN ISO 2345 tested and certified and above the minimum requirement of self-certification for CE. Tracerlite has also achieved CEN ISO 2347 Certification for Occupational Footwear for its nonsafety toe boots. Rigorous control of supply channels, manufacturing and quality assurance ensures that Tracerlite has entered the European market with quality footwear that is being used daily in harsh conditions with many thousands of satisfied users

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Phoenix Boot This year Tracerlite will be launching its Phoenix Boot, which, designed as a Type 2 Class 1 structural fire boot and to meet the requirements of BS7971 for public order duties, will be an ideal boot for USAR, technical rescue and public disturbance use. Tracerlite Duty Boots are not for the fashion conscious, they are for the serious professional user who has to wear boots day in day out in a range of conditions. Tracerlite Boots are available now through UK partners SP Services (UK) Ltd and Niton Equipment Ltd.

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Rosenbauer’s UK market share matures

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service, in 2007, became the first UK brigade to take the Rosenbauer HEROS-xtreme. Since then, North Fire plc (Rosenbauer’s exclusive UK distributor) has been rolling out fire helmets almost continuously, cementing the HEROS-xtreme’s market leader tag. In 2014 the forecast continues at a steady pace for the helmet and also a relatively new addition in the Rosenbauer PPE family – the ‘TWISTER-new’. The new version of the Rosenbauer Twister fire boot has won countless trials since its launch just over a year ago and now forecasts predict a similar sales pattern for the lace-up boot as that of the Rosenbauer helmet.

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Arresting design for PPE with integrated safety harness

Most comfortable With the robust ‘BOA’ speed-lace system, wearers have the advantage of lighting quick lace-up with arguably the most comfortable boot on the market. And as per Rosenbauer’s philosophy on any PPE item, the protection level is second-to-none complying to, and in most cases, exceeding the EN15090 fire boot standard. In addition, the boots are made to last and the quality on construction means the life expectancy of the boot, in most cases, doubles that of a cheap pull on fire boot, making the Rosenbauer Twister the number one choice for protection, comfort and whole life costing.

Bristol has launched a complete body safety harness, which is fully integrated into structural firefighter garments, thus affording improved wearer comfort in a single garment meeting EN469:2005 Level 2 protection. Until now, the typical means of providing added safety for firefighters when required to work at height has been the use of an external harness designed to fit over the PPE being worn for the task in hand, requiring the firefighter to don and doff two separate items of clothing. Bristol’s innovative design makes for a much more compact solution with fewer harness components exposed to damage or snagging during operations as most of the supporting components are enclosed within, or under, the fabric layers of both coat and trouser. Available as an option with Bristol’s Ergotech Action™, XFlex™ and RescueFlex™ designs, proprietary harnesses have been carefully integrated into the firefighter clothing after the completion of an extensive in-house design programme and wearer trials.

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The latest must-have kit 1

Pj-673 mobile printer – Brother


Brother has unveiled a new addition to its mobile business printer range with a model that can print from Apple iOS devices through a wireless connection. The compact printer, ideal for mobile workers looking to work productively on the go, can print documents up to A4. Compact and lightweight (480g excluding battery), the printer is fully portable and prints using direct thermal printing technology, so no ink, toner or ribbons are needed. The printers are powered by rechargeable battery, AC adapter or vehicle power supplies. At the suggested retail price of £499, the machine offers high print quality of 300dpi and quick print speeds of six pages per minute.


FLIR ONE™ – FLIR Systems Inc


FLIR Systems Inc, a world leader in thermal imaging technology, has announced the launch of FLIR ONE™, the first personal thermal imaging device especially targeted at the consumer market. Unveiled at CES 2014, FLIR ONE places powerful thermal imaging technology in the hands of consumers. It is compact, easy-to-use, compatible with the iPhone5 and 5s and fits on the phone like a protective case. Once mounted, the device displays a live thermal image of the world on the phone’s screen. With a worldwide rollout planned for spring 2014, the iPhone5 and 5s-compatible FLIR ONE will be available for under US$350 in space grey, white or gold. FLIR ONE houses its own battery source that can power the device for two hours of continuous use.


VICO portable smoke generator – HAAGEN


The VICO from HAAGEN is a portable robust smoke generator that works on a rechargeable battery, no power cord necessary, enabling firefighters and safety training professionals to conduct training in situations anywhere. With a heating up time of 1-2 seconds, the VICO produces up to 150m3 of smoke per minute, which is instantly a dense, thick and high quality dry smoke without leaving a residue. With the smoke release button built into the grip, the VICO can be operated with one hand, even with a glove on. Via its WiFi capability the VICO can be operated and controlled by a connected laptop computer, tablet, smartphone or handheld device. With the optional remote control (wireless or wired) the VICO can also be operated from a distance.


Portable cooling system – Lec Medical

Lec Medical, one of the leading suppliers and pioneers of medical refrigeration in the UK, has unveiled a new portable cooling system that is ideal for medics on the go. Providing safe, reliable and energy efficient temperature controlled storage for drugs and vaccines that need to be transported, the system conforms to MHRA guidelines and offers an ideal solution for out of hours doctors and emergency services. Guaranteed to hold the temperature inside between 2 and 8°C for up to 30 hours using 12 frozen Soft Gel packs, the new 12-13L model comes with an external digital LED thermometer that is battery-powered and is built into the lid to display accurate temperatures to 0.1°C. The system also comes complete with an aluminium heat preserving foil lining for optimum temperature over time.

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The latest must-have kit 5


BARRIER EasyWarm blanket – Mölnlycke Health Care

The BARRIER EasyWarm active self-warming blanket from Mölnlycke Health Care has 12 air-activated warming pads consisting of 100 percent natural material, such as active coal, clay, salt, water and iron powder. The blanket maintains an average temperature of 44°C for up to 10 hours, raising skin temperature to a maximum of 42°C. Quick and easy to set up, the blanket can be used before, during and after surgery as it does not need any additional equipment such as fans, hoses or electricity.



3315Z0 LED torch – Peli Products

The new 3315Z0 LED torch from Peli is ideal for fire and rescue personnel. It is compact and features a body with ridges for extra grip, particularly with gloves. This lightweight torch has been developed for first responders and industrial safety professionals and is certified to ATEX Zone 0. Powered by three AA batteries, the Peli 3315Z0 LED torch has an approximate runtime of 19 hours and a light output of 110 lumens. It is made of virtually indestructible polymer material and available in yellow and grey. A safety wrist lanyard is attached to avoid losing the torch in risky situations. It also features a lockable battery compartment and an IPX7 Waterproof rating. The weight is only 180g (including batteries).


Extended life vehicle conspicuity – Rennicks UK



A special high-visibility system designed to make the emergency services stand out from the crowd is now guaranteed to stand the test of time too. Rennicks UK has utilised the latest technology to develop a conspicuity material offering top-grade visibility. The system, comprising Nikkalite® Flexible Crystal Grade Microprismatic sheeting, was first launched last year. But Rennicks has now technically verified a 10-year performance life when converted by a Gold level partner. The material, used in conjunction with AdvantEdge technology, features an enhanced top-layer pigment, which provides long-lasting protection against the elements with an impenetrable industry-leading and highly accurate edge-seal preventing water ingress and dirt damage. The end result is tough and highly durable livery that is flexible enough for the contours of vehicle bodywork and provides outstanding visibility. And its 10-year working life means it is also designed to cope with the longer service times now faced by many emergency vehicles.


PAWS canine video search – Wood & Douglas

Specialist wireless communications company, Wood & Douglas, has launched a lower cost, lightweight, Wi-Fi enabled variant of its Portable All-terrain Wireless System, or PAWS, a live video link designed to be worn by military and search trained dogs. With a head-mounted video camera, PAWS Wi-Fi enables a dog to operate without any discomfort, beaming real-time video to its handler for search and rescue, military operations support, explosives and drugs detection. With a camera that supports low light, high resolution and Infra Red ‘day for night’ vision options, the dog-mounted video system can be used to search buildings and difficult to traverse terrain; locate and then positively identify suspect packages, devices, or individuals, providing evidence gathering for prosecution or operational assessment.

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Supacat Semi static ropes reach heights of PETZL excellence makes multi-role Discovery The Supacat Utility Vehicle 600 (SUV 600) concept has been launched to operators of emergency, and specialist and vehicle fleets. SUV 600 meets a growing requirement for compact multi-role rapid response vehicles, offering all weather capability and agile off-road performance. Its compact dimensions ensure access to narrow routes and difficult terrain.

For a rope to have the PETZL name on it means it has reached the same level of excellence as the iconic products for which the company has become world famous. Specified to give the finest levels of performance with the PETZL access and rescue equipment chosen by experts across the world, each rope in the semi-static range has earned its right to be included. The PETZL Parallel 10.5mm diameter rope combines light weight and fluid handling with toughness and low extension, making it ideal for expert users in situations where every gramme counts. Its reduced volume compared to 11mm diameter rope also makes it easier to store long lengths in vehicles where storage space is at a premium. PETZL Axis 11mm diameter rope is the workhorse of the range. Selected by rope access users and emergency services alike; it provides a greater knotted strength and increased levels of wear resistance. Axis ropes also have the option of a factory sewn terminated eye fitted with the classic PETZL plastic stitch protector. PETZL’s patented sewn termination cover does more than just protect stitching. Its clever design captivates the connector, keeping the connector orientated in the rope eye and reducing the risk of incorrect loading. PETZL Grip 12.5mm diameter rope is the big one for specialist users. Its larger diameter ensures an easy grip even in gloves, making it a good choice for heavy duty hauling systems, Tyroleans and high load applications Completing the line-up, and at the other end of the size scale from the Grip is the PETZL Link 7mm control cord. This EN564 compliant cord is ideal for use as a tag line, guiding a casualty or stretcher during rescue. Every PETZL model, available from Lyon Equipment Limited, comes in a range of specially chosen lengths available off the shelf, with the option of custom cut lengths to order.

Supacat adapted a production standard Land Rover Discovery 4x4 and added a third driven axle to increase payload capacity and physical space, allowing heavier and larger systems to be fitted, which broadens the usability of the vehicle. At The Emergency Services Show 2013 Supacat exhibited the SUV 600 concept in a chassis cab configuration with separate functional box body, manufactured by Strongs, in the fire and rescue services role.

PETZL Parallel 10.5mm diameter rope.

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PETZL Axis 11mm diameter ropes also have the option of a factory sewn terminated eye fitted with the classic PETZL plastic stitch protector.

PETZL Grip 12.5mm diameter rope.

Niche applications “The SUV600 offers a capability not being met by existing off-the-shelf utility vehicles. It has an up to date automotive base platform providing modern-day ride and handling to meet current demands, coupled with the payload capacity to carry the necessary equipment to perform a functional role,” said Bill Waddell, Supacat. “This is the first Discovery 4 conversion and it is attracting significant interest for a wide range of niche applications.” The SUV 600 has a GVW of 5300kg and maximum payload of 2500kg. Maximum speed is 100mph delivered by a 3.0-litre 255PS turbocharged V6 diesel. Suspension is independent double wishbone air adjustable and drive is 6x6 high/low range and transmission is 8-speed automatic. The load area can be configured in a variety of ways to meet the demands of rural and urban brigades. SUV600 also meets Aviation CAT 3 requirements, which is unique for a vehicle of this size. Supacat develops specialist vehicles for military, marine and energy sectors, including the ‘Jackal’ for British armed forces.

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KNEE & ELBOW Protection

Cold, wet and dehydration can reduce performance and impair safety. By fitting a ‘TeaMate’ water boiler, crews can make themselves a cup of tea, coffee or other hot beverage to keep warm and hydrated, therefore maximising concentration and keeping fatigue to a minimum.

Comprehensive range to suit every application Ergonomic design Comfortable and secure fit Reliable protection Tough and hard wearing Manufactured to the highest standards from selected quality materials marking throughout NATO Stock No: 22c 8415-99-8873869

Gotec Trading Limited Boulton Road Pin Green Stevenage Her ts SG1 4QL Telephone 01438 740400 Fax 01438 740005

• Compact commercial grade throughout. • Self contained fully automatic. • 24v and 12v models available.


• Makes up to 9 mugs per filling. WHISPAIRE LTD Email: Web: T: + 44 (0)1794 523999 F: + 44 (0)1794 519151

Get all the latest news by signing up for the FREE EST E-newsletter

Role Title: Chemical Emergency Responder Location: Oxfordshire

HOT PACK™ Self-Heating Nutritious Meals In 12 minutes, you can create a delicious hot meal, with Hot Pack Self Heating Meals, anywhere you need it. Everything is in the pack to produce a satisfying hot meal without using any other equipment. Even cutlery and a dish are included! Choose from seven great tasting, ready to eat recipes: Chicken Casserole, Lancashire Hot Pot, Chicken Dopiaza Curry, Sausages and Beans, Spicy Vegetable Rigatoni, Meatballs & Pasta and Vegetable Curry. Make it easy. Enjoy a HOT PACK™ meal – anywhere! Contact Canland UK Ltd, Wellington House, Lower Icknield Way Longwick, Bucks HP27 9RZ Tel/Fax: 01844 344474 E.mail: Web site:

Salary: Circa £22,000 per annum Reference: 6081

Company Information National Chemical Emergency Centre (NCEC), part of Ricardo-AEA, is the world’s number one chemical emergency response centre. NCEC operates the Chemsafe emergency response system. Chemsafe provides 24/7 vital support to the UK emergency services helping them deal with hazardous materials safely. In addition, NCEC operates a global, commercial telephone emergency response service to many of the world’s biggest chemical companies. Role purpose The role of an NCEC Emergency Responder is to provide critical 24/7 telephone-based Emergency Response information to callers dealing with chemical emergency incidents. Emergency Responders have expert knowledge in one or more of a variety of fields, including chemicals, emergency services operations and industrial health and safety. Callers to the service may be emergency services, chemical and transport companies, members of the public and others, both in the UK and abroad. Aside from the provision of emergency advice to callers, the post-holder will contribute to NCEC’s other services such as Chemdata chemical hazard software and NCEC’s training courses. The Person: The ideal candidate will have a strong background in hazardous materials management. This may be gained for example through; - Emergency Services - Academic (chemistry) experience - Industry - Public health or environmental sciences Demonstrable chemistry experience or a recognised chemistry further education would be an advantage, as would practical knowledge of emergency response involving hazardous materials, for example in operation of DIM equipment. Knowledge of Safety Data Sheets or transport regulation would also be an advantage, as would a DGSA qualification. Emergency Responders work a 24-hour office based shift pattern, so this is the ideal position for applicants seeking the flexibility and independence a shift role brings. Successful candidates will demonstrate the following skills: • A strong logical approach • A professional writing style • Attention to detail • Ability to communicate verbally in a concise way • Success in interacting with a wide variety of people • Ability to work independently and organise your own workload • Ability to quickly interpret complex information, while operating under pressure In return for your commitment, drive and enthusiasm, we offer an extremely attractive remuneration and benefits package, a personal development plan, and the opportunity to make a difference in a challenging and rewarding field. Ricardo-AEA strives to be an equal opportunities employer.

To apply, please email your application to

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EMS (UK) Ltd. EMS (UK) are now an Edexcel accredited training centre offering a range of medical courses delivered by pre-hospital medical professionals, including; IHCD D1 & D2 Emergency Driver Training IHCD First Person on Scene (FPOS) Basic IHCD First Person on Scene (FPOS) Intermediate Automated External Defibrillator (AED) Training Paediatric First Aid First Aid at Work Emergency First Aid at Work Please Contact us for more information on (01388)720512 or

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Protecting organisational reputation When three-year-old Mikaeel Kular was reported missing from his home in Edinburgh on the morning of 16 January, Police Scotland immediately knew that they needed to get the media on board. Within minutes they issued a press release appealing for the public’s help to trace him and within an hour the Corporate Communications Office had been invited to attend a strategy meeting. Words: Susan Blackburn, Head of Media Training, FC Media Ltd. Further infoormation and a more detailed description of Mikaeel, including a photo, were included in a second press release. Superintendent Liz McAinsh held news conferences and officers gave one-to-one briefings with reporters. Sky News, the BBC, ITV News, all the Scottish media showed pictures of officers scouring the area, lifting dustbin lids and searching under hedges. There was no doubt to the public that officers were employing all their highly trained detective skills and doing their very best to find him. Use of social media Susan Lumsden, Head of Communications for Police Scotland East, says they used social media extensively. She said, “Firstly we utilised it to publicise all of our press releases to as wide an audience as possible and secondly it was used as a method of continued engagement with the local community.” Superintendent Liz McAinsh’s appeals for information were sympathetic, human. Her tone and appearance made her part of the local community. Hundreds of local people joined in the search. Across the UK, people discussed the story at the hairdressers, in the pub and at the school gates. Everyone desperately hoped Mikaeel would be found. All eyes were focused on the police and their investigation. When Assistant Chief Constable Malcolm Graham had the terrible task of announcing that Mikaeel’s body had been discovered, his news conference was clear and well structured. He clearly acknowledged the emotion of the situation. When he sincerely thanked the public and the media for their help in the search for Mikaeel, he strengthened the relationship between the police and the community. This was an example of the police working with the media at its best. According to Susan Lumsden, both Superintendent Liz McAinsh and Assistant Chief Constable Malcolm Graham received full media briefings prior to the news conferences and interviews, and both have undertaken media training. This was invaluable when the force was in the spotlight and the response had to be fast. Staff working for the emergency services have traditionally been reluctant to talk to the media and unlike commercial organisations, few have received media training. There always used to be a press officer, who kept journalists at arm’s length. But the media has changed dramatically over the past few years. Every member of the public with a mobile phone has now become a reporter. The London bombings in July 2005 was the first Major Incident where reports and pictures provided by the public and sent to broadcasters were far ahead of the information provided by the police.

Susan Blackburn is a former Senior Producer and Editor on the BBC’s Six and Ten O’clock News. Susan Blackburn is the Head of Media Training for FC Media Ltd, which provides bespoke scenario-based media training courses to the Emergency Services.

With the advent of social media we now live in a world of instant news and the emergency services need to respond much more rapidly. More people now need to be trained so that they can engage effectively with the press. As soon as there’s a Major Incident now, the public are on the scene with mobile phones; they take the video and photos, which can ‘go viral’ long before the emergency services or news organisations can get to the scene. Who will ever forget the video images of Michael Adebolajo, the murderer of Drummer Lee Rigby with blood on his hands? He asked people on a bus to film him with their mobile phones minutes after hacking the soldier to death and within half an hour footage was being shown on ITV and bought by newspapers and broadcasters all over the world. YouTube, Facebook and Twitter made the story global within minutes. Broadcasters have recruited teams to take in and verify this material. Paul Royall, Editor of the BBC’s Six and Ten O’clock News programmes, says, “People anywhere in the world can report what they are seeing, send in pictures, any visual material of what they’re seeing, talk about events in a fast, efficient, immediate way that gives us information that previously years ago we just wouldn’t have had access to.” Embrace this engagement Press officers working for the emergency services have much less control over what gets into the public domain. Paul Royall continues, “If there was a Major Incident, or event, a motorway accident or a plane crash, we would expect a wide range of material from the public very, very quickly – eyewitnesses, people who are there, people who potentially have survived, people passing the scene, moving to the scene, would quickly be providing us

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with pictures, all sorts of material that potentially can aid our reporting.” To keep in control it’s vital to anticipate public comment – to stamp the incident with an official authoritative media response, via the traditional and social media. It’s also vital to provide a recognisable spokesperson, who will provide regular updates and reassure the public that the best possible job is being done to save lives. Anna Doble, the Head of Online for Channel 4 News, says the emergency services should embrace this engagement. Anna says, “Social media has created a direct link between the man on the ground, or the woman at the desk and the ambulance service, the police the fire brigade, it’s a new way to show we are all humans, we are all trying to do the best we can, and this is the information we currently have that we can share with you quickly.” Effective messages To be authoritative, calm, and deliver a structured effective message when faced with a sea of cameras and journalists is a skill most people have to learn. Careers can be ruined, reputations of entire services shattered and public confidence lost with poor performance. When I’m training senior staff from the emergency services how to respond to the media, they are often horrified when I mention reputation management during a Major Incident. Dedicated to their professions, they think that reputation is unimportant when lives are being saved. But one does not necessarily have to preclude the other. “The main priority when dealing with a major incident from a media perspective is to ensure the public are suitably informed and provided with all the relevant information to support but not compromise the investigation,” explains Susan Lumsden, Head of Communications for Police Scotland East. “Subsidiary to that, but also very important, is maintaining, protecting and preserving the reputation of the organisation. Behind the scenes, at Gold meetings, the Corporate Communications Managers are highlighting potential reputational issues and advising on how to address them.” More and more police, ambulance and fire and rescue services are becoming aware of just how detrimental poor communication skills can be in a crisis. But media training is often poor, carried out by former journalists who have never worked on national or international news stories, who are out of touch with digital newsrooms. There is no doubt that expert training, leading to truly effective media management can not only influence the outcome of a major incident but also protect the reputation of individuals and entire services at the same time.

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