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Community Safety Strategy 2011/12 – 2014/15 (Incorporating Corporate and IRMP plans)

County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Authority

Safest People, Safest Places

Contents Part 1 – Background and Information Page 1 Part 2 – Understanding and Managing the Risks in County Durham and Darlington        Page 5 Part 3 – Challenges Facing County Durham and Darlington Fire Authority                       Page 14 Part 4 – Aligning Resources to Risk                            Page 16 Part 5 – Our Four Year Plans                     Page 19 Part 6 – Combined Fire Authority Members  Page 28 Part 7 – Organisational Structure    Page 30 Part 8 – Consultation on our Plans  Page 31 2011/12 Improvement Plan Page 32


Part 1 - Background and Information Welcome to County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Authority’s Community Safety Strategy which incorporates the Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP).

This strategy sets out how the Authority will work towards its vision of

Councillor Gordon Tennant Chairman County Durham and Darlington  Fire and Rescue Authority                             

Safest People, Safest Places. County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Authority has been very successful in reducing the risks that face local people and local businesses. The Authority has worked with local people, partners and stakeholders to improve it’s prevention services whilst ensuring it responds to emergencies efficiently and effectively. The next four years are likely to be the most challenging the Fire Authority has faced in recent history. Resources from Government are being reduced significantly whilst risks continue to change. This strategy sets out how County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service will respond to these challenges and how it will change the way services are delivered with the aim of ensuring that reduced financial resources do not result in increases in risk to local communities. The Fire Authority has produced this strategy to enable local people to see how their fire and rescue service will work with them, and with partners, to ensure that local communities are safe. The strategy includes information on the Authority’s vision, aims and objectives, where it needs to improve and the resources that it has available to deliver its services. Delivering on our vision of Safest People, Safest Places is the focus of this strategy. For the next four years the Authority has committed to this vision and will work with local people in County Durham and Darlington to make sure that they are safe.

Susan Johnson  Chief Executive County Durham and Darlington  Fire and Rescue Service


Introduction County Durham and Darlington Fire Authority’s

also includes our Integrated Risk Management

vision is

Plan proposals for the operational elements of the Service. The Strategy is aligned to achieving our

Safest People, Safest Places

vision of Safest People, Safest Places and includes the following information:

The Authority is focused on managing risks and ensuring that resources are allocated efficiently

▪ The aims and objectives that will help to

and effectively to reduce the number of emergency

deliver the Authority’s vision.

incidents and the associated risk of injury or death in the local area. This Community Safety Strategy

▪ An analysis of risks, including those in


local areas and how these are being managed.






Management Plan (IRMP), which sets out details of the operational risks facing local communities and

▪ How the Authority intends to reduce risks.

how the Authority proposes to reduce the risk of injury or harm.

What is the Community Safety Strategy? The Community Safety Strategy is the Authority’s key strategic document that sets out how it will provide its services over the next four years. This Strategy sets out where we want to be and

▪ How resources will be prioritised. ▪ How performance will be measured, monitored

and reported.


Vision, Aims And Objectives Our Strategy on

One Page

To help us pursue our vision, we have three aims which are underpinned by seven objectives. VISION







Identify and Reduce Risks

Respond Effectively and Competently

Define and Deliver our Role in the Community

Invest in the skills and potential of our People

Optimise the Contribution of our People

Develop an Organisation that is Fit for Purpose

Deliver Value for Money

All of the work that we undertake as a Fire Authority

Throughout the remainder of this strategy we have

is targeted at ensuring that our aims and objectives

identified how our work links to our strategic aims

are achieved. Our performance is also measured

by use of the three symbols. This makes it easier

against our three aims, so that we can see at a

to see how our work is targeted at our aims and

glance how well we are doing and where we need

where our improvement plans are focused.

to make improvements in specific areas. The diagram clearly demonstrates how our vision, aims and objectives link together.


Planning and Performance The

Framework We have a number of supporting strategies that

Our annual improvement plans (which are either

provide details of how we will work towards meeting

Station plans or Section plans) provide detailed

our aims and objectives and ultimately our vision.

improvement actions which show exactly what we

These strategies focus on ensuring that we have the

are doing to improve services on an annual basis.

appropriate people, skills and physical resources in the right place at the right time.







Our strategies and plans can be accessed from our website at


Part 2 - Understanding and Managing the Risks in County Durham and Darlington This section of the Community Safety Strategy provides information on our approach to gathering information on risk. By understanding the risks in our local communities and understanding why they exist, we can allocate our resources as effectively and efficiently as possible and reduce these risks through our prevention and protection work.

Identifying the risks in our local communities There are a number of factors that need to be considered in assessing risks in local areas. We try to gain as broad an understanding of risk as possible by considering those issues that are likely to have an impact on the safety and wellbeing of residents. The following diagram sets out how we build up a picture of risks in our local communities.







Understanding the local


County Durham and Darlington is in the North East

Further regeneration is taking place in other local

of England and covers an area of almost 2,460

areas such as Spennymoor, Bishop Auckland and

square kilometres. Durham City and the larger

more recently with the Hitachi project in Newton

industrial and commercial towns are in the east


of the area; in contrast the west is predominantly rural consisting of open moor land and wooded river

Tourism plays an important part in the local

valleys and is sparsely populated. Darlington, our

economy. Key attractions such as the World

largest town, lies in the South and is undergoing


significant regeneration.

Museum, the North Pennines and the Durham






County Cricket Ground at Chester-le-Street attract With good transport networks, the area is accessible

thousands of visitors each year.

by rail via the East-Coast mainline, by road via the A1 (M) and A19 and by air via Newcastle and

The growing number of business and industrial

Durham Tees Valley International Airports.

developments such as NETPark contribute to the local economy and provide new areas of work for

Over the last twenty-five years the traditional industries,






local people.


manufacturing, have disappeared and have been

Durham has a world class University, and the

replaced by high-tech factories and modern business


parks in towns such as Peterlee and Sedgefield.

contribution to the local area.







Demographics and the Effects of Deprivation Today, 606,800* people live in County Durham and Darlington, with just under half of these being in work. These population figures, whilst remaining fairly static in recent years, have decreased since the 1970’s in line with the national trend. The population comprises approximately 51% females and 2.2% ethnic minorities; 21.8% are under 18 and 16.6% are over 65. ** Many parts of the area have housing stock that is sub-standard, falling below accepted decency levels. The area also has poor health statistics and low life expectancies. Economic activity in the area is low – almost 10% lower than the national average and, despite real improvements in recent years, educational attainment is also below the national average. Clearly these factors contribute significantly to the alarming and unacceptable levels of social deprivation observed in our area. According to national statistics County Durham and Darlington has 12.8% of its areas in the top 10% most deprived; 29.8% in the top 20% most deprived; and 46.5% in the top 30% most deprived. These factors impact on the risk profile for County Durham and Darlington and, therefore, help us to determine where we need to allocate resources in order to mitigate these risks.

* ONS mid 2009 population estimates ** Government Census 2001


The Generic Risks in County Durham &

Darlington There are a number of risks that face all of our

from flooding. In recent years this risk has increased

communities. Through our previous experience and

nationally. Locally we have a number of areas within

our consideration of possible future events, we can

County Durham and Darlington that have been

build up a picture of these generic risks.

subject to localised flooding. We have used our

Risk of death, injury or loss from fire A risk that faces all of our communities is that related to fire. One of our main reasons for providing

national resilience assets (see Resources section of the strategy) to deal with localised flooding in the Derwentside and Durham areas.

services to our local communities is to mitigate this

Risk of Terrorist Activity

risk through our prevention and protection services.

Events over the last few years both at home and

The degree of risk varies depending on the local

abroad have raised the risk of terrorist activity

area and on the individual people and lifestyles

impacting on our society. The Fire and Rescue

within the local area.

Service plays a major role in protecting the

Risk of death or injury from road traffic collisions

community in the event of such an incident.

Pandemic Flu

We have a number of major road networks in

Outbreaks of pandemic flu represent a national

our local area that present a risk of road traffic

risk that will impact locally in County Durham and

collisions, as well as many rural roads which also

Darlington. High numbers of cases represent a risk

present a risk. We need to ensure that we mitigate

to local people, businesses and the economy.

these risks through our protection and prevention services. We have joint protocols in place with

Industrial Incidents

partners to deal with any major transport related

Industrial accidents pose a specific risk at individual


premises and a wider risk to local communities

Risk of extreme weather

depending on the type of accident. We provide fire safety advice to local businesses as part of

An increasing risk relates to extreme weather. This

our prevention and protection services and we are

includes risk of death, injury or loss in particular

equipped to respond to incidents that occur.


Specific Risks in County Durham & Darlington We are aware that there are different risks that are

and several large housing estates. The A1M

specific to certain parts of our area. We manage

motorway passes the outskirts of Darlington and

these risks through our District structure which

the East-Coast mainline passes through the town

enables us to target our resources based on local

and serves a major rail station. Barnard Castle is


predominantly rural with small scale residential

Wear and Tees District (Bishop Auckland, Stanhope and Middleton in Teesdale Fire Stations) The Wear and Tees District area is located in the

areas, a hospital, a young offenders prison as well as Bowes Museum, a major heritage site housing many important works of art. The town is also home to a large scale chemical production site.

Darlington. There is a mix of industrial, commercial,

Easington District (Peterlee, Seaham and Wheatley Hill Fire Stations)

residential and rural areas that represent a varied

The Easington District includes concentrated areas

range of risks that need to be managed effectively.

of population and industrial estates in Peterlee and

This includes a number of large industrial estates,

Seaham. A number of industrial sites are located

large scale industry, water risks relating specifically

within the District area with their own specific risks

to Stanhope and Middleton, a number of important

and the busy Newcastle to Middlesbrough railway

roads and a number of large social housing estates

line runs through the area. The A19 road network

that do not meet modern standards.

and a number of rural roads further contribute to

heart of the area covered by County Durham and

Derwentside District (Consett and High Handenhold Fire Stations) The specific risks identified within the Derwentside District area relate to a significant level of low quality housing and a large number of older terraced properties. The area also includes three large hotels and sites of specific interest. Local industry consists of traditional light engineering and more modern service industry sites.

Darlington District (Darlington and Barnard Castle Fire Stations) Darlington is a large market town with a large population. The Darlington area comprises large scale industrial, commercial and residential areas resulting in a broad mix of risks. There are a large number of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HiMO)

the diverse risks within the Easington District area.


Sedgefield District (Newton Aycliffe, Spennymoor, Sedgefield Fire Stations)

of Durham as well as three hospitals. There are

The area is comprised of significant industrial

of modern retail and manufacturing facilities

risks, particularly in Newton Aycliffe and includes

interspersed with more traditional industries. The

a number of concentrated areas of population.

River Wear runs through the District area and the

The industrial estate located in Newton Aycliffe

busy Durham railway station is an important link

area incorporates a number of large industrial,

on the east coast mainline. The city is also served

engineering and commercial sites. Communities

by the main A1M motorway which runs by the

are served by some of the County’s busiest roads

outskirts of Durham.

including the A1M and the East-Coast railway line runs through the District area.

Durham and Chester-le-Street District (Durham and Crook Fire Stations) The significant risks managed within this District include the Cathedral heritage site, the University

also three prisons within the area. New local industrial estates have been established consisting

Further details of the specific risks in local areas are available from our District plans which are available from our website.


Specific Risk Groups Within our local communities there are specific

Specific Road Traffic Collision Risks

groups of people that we know represent a higher

We know that young drivers are more likely to be

than average risk. These higher risk groups are

involved in a road traffic collision and suffer harm.

outlined in this part of the strategy.

People that ride motorbikes and the elderly are also more at risk from a road traffic collision. We work

Specific Fire Risks

closely with partners on prevention and education

We have analysed the people that are most at risk

activities to attempt to ensure that these drivers are

from fire in our local communities.

made aware of the risks that they face when they are on the roads in County Durham and Darlington.

We work closely with our partners to identify the most vulnerable people and we take action together

Emergency Response Standards

to reduce these risks.

Our published response standards are set out below. We will attend 70% of all domestic and non domestic building fires within 8 minutes, and 90% within 11 minutes.

Alcohol Dependent

We will attend 75% of all road traffic collisions within 11 minutes, and 90% within 15 minutes. Â

People who Live Alone

Targeted Action to Reduce Risk

People with Mental Health Issues

People who Smoke

People with No Family

We review these standards on a regular basis to ensure that we take account of any changes to risk in local communities. Over the life of the strategy we will need to consider our response standards in light of changing risks and reduced resources. We will consult on any proposed changes to our response standards.


Working in Partnership to Understand Risks The Fire and Rescue Service is a trusted partner. We work closely with other public services in County Durham and Darlington to understand the wider risks facing local communities.

We cannot protect our local communities on

the long term and how partner agencies will work

our own. We have increasing evidence to show

to deliver those priorities. This is an important

that most people who are vulnerable are usually

document as it shapes the work of all partners

vulnerable across a range of different risks. With

in the area and influences how they will use their

this in mind all local authorities have a duty to

resources to make improvements for local people.

work with key partners to produce a Sustainable

The strategy also shows central government that

Community Strategy (SCS) to show how they will

partners have a clear shared vision for the future of

work together to improve the economic, social and

the area and have set clear priorities for action. It

environmental wellbeing of the area. The SCS sets

encourages businesses to invest in the area and the

out the shared long-term vision and ambitions

government to provide additional targeted support.

for that area and contributes to the priorities that partners and communities believe are important. The strategy does not provide a comprehensive list of everything that is happening to improve the area, rather it sets out key priorities for change for


The Combined Fire Authority’s integrated planning

These priority themes give a unifying structure as

process takes account of the SCS’s for both Durham

to what partners are seeking to deliver, making

and Darlington local authority areas. Whilst each

it simpler for the people charged with delivery to

strategy is different in style, the key themes are

understand. As an example, we recognise that

broadly similar across both areas. The Fire and

those people who are vulnerable and most at risk

Rescue Service comes into contact with many

from being killed or seriously injured in a house

people living in local communities on a day to day

fire are also those suffering from poor health, living

basis and has a unique ability and capacity to effect

alone or in sub-standard housing and/or are at risk

positive and sustainable change across all of the

from lifestyle issues such as smoking or alcohol

themes, which are:-

misuse. These complex and often inter-related risk factors cannot be reduced or eliminated by one

Economic prosperity

agency acting alone. The Service has in place a

The focus is on creating a vibrant economy that puts

toolkit that has helped us to understand in a high

regeneration, economic development and quality of

level of detail where, how and when we can make

life at the heart of sustainable communities.

the most meaningful contribution across this broad

Improved aspirations especially for the young

agenda and is constantly striving to understand and deliver against our broader societal role.

Enabling children and young people to develop and achieve their aspirations, and to maximise their potential in line with the governments Every Child Matters agenda.

Improved health Improving health and wellbeing for everybody irrespective of social, economic and environmental constraints.

Safer society

Community Services Department

Creating of a safer county and borough.

Environmental improvements Ensuring






environment, and contributing to tackling global environmental challenges.


Part 3 - Challenges

Facing County Durham and

Darlington Fire Authority We have identified the operational risks that direct our protection and prevention work in part 2 of this strategy. The Fire Authority also faces a number of other challenges over the medium to longer term that can impact on how services are delivered. We need to ensure that we have plans in place to meet these challenges to ensure that we can continue to provide effective and efficient services to our local communities.

Reduced Funding The Fire Authority has received one of the highest

The Changing Public Sector Landscape

levels of grant reduction for financial years 2011/12

A number of changes are being made to public

and 2012/13. No details of grant settlement have

service provision across the Country. These changes

been received for the final two years of this strategy,

will impact on the way we interact with our partner

however we are anticipating significant further

agencies. In particular, changes to the structure of

reductions in central government grant funding.

the health service including the abolition of primary

We have established an approach to reducing our

care trusts will require us to identify new ways of

costs through our Service Transformation project,

working with our partners.

which is focused on implementing savings options that do not impact on service provision at the point of delivery.


Asset Management – Estate Improvement


Our assets are vital to ensuring that we can provide

this strategy we need to ensure that our people

effective and efficient services to local communities.

are appropriately trained, properly equipped and

A number of our fire stations need to be modernised

developed effectively to undertake their roles. We

to ensure that they are fit for purpose, provide

recognise that to deliver effective services to local

appropriate community facilities in accordance with

communities we need to continue to invest in our

our protection and prevention work and are places

staff and recognise their potential.

where people want to work from, in order to attract and retain the right staff. We also need to improve our training and development facilities to ensure that we continue to provide our staff with the very best opportunities to hone their skills and ensure they can respond competently.

The Environment We are aware of our own impact on the environment and of the environmental impact of fire on local communities. During times of reduced funding, we recognise that we will need to be innovative to ensure that our own operations take account of the environment. We work closely with the Environment Agency to ensure the environmental impact from incidents is minimised. Furthermore, by continuing to improve our performance and reduce the number of fires we can positively impact on the environmental consequences of fires.

Organisational Development The significant changes to public services and the reduction in available funding means that we need to be an organisation that is lean and efficient. To do this, we need to continually review how we do things and develop improved ways of working. Developing the organisation will be extremely challenging when resources are reducing and will require effective management if we are to ensure the performance improvements we have made in recent years are to be sustained.

Our people are our greatest asset. Over the life of


Part 4 - Aligning Resources to Risk This section of the strategy provides information on our resources, how they are allocated and how we make best use of our resources to ensure that we can effectively manage the risks to our communities.

Revenue budgets

Staff Numbers 2011/12


Whole-time Fire- fighters



Part-time Fire-fighters



Control Room Staff



Support Staff



The Authority has a revenue budget for 2011/12 of ÂŁ29.863M. This takes account of a government grant reduction of 9.5%. We have been informed that our grant will also be reduced by a further 2.26% in 2012/13. Beyond this there is no certainty of the grant we will receive, however we are planning for a 25% grant reduction over the four year period covered by this strategy.

People Our


The anticipated reduction in resources over the

District areas; Darlington, Derwentside, Durham,






life of this strategy represents a real risk to the

Easington, Sedgefield and Wear and Tees. Placing

continuing provision of services to the standard

our operational, community and fire safety staff in

that local people expect. In order to mitigate this

local areas enables us to provide a more integrated,

the Authority put in place a Service Transformation

cohesive and focused approach to addressing local

project that has identified new ways of working to

risks. In addition this improves access to services

reduce costs whilst maintaining the same level of

and advice for local residents and members of our

service at the point of delivery.

business community. The Authority employs 646 people in total.

Medium Term Financial Plan Extract 2011/12




Budget before savings





Efficiency savings





Service Transformation Savings





Phase 2 Service Transformation Savings









Grant Income





Council Tax









Budget Requirement

Total Funding


County Durham and Darlington Fire Authority Asset Distribution as at 1 April 2011

Fire Stations Appliances Arial Ladder Platforms

Wear and Tees 3 4 -

Special Appliances


Targeted Response






2 4 -

2 4 1

3 5 -

3 5 -

Durham and Chester-leStreet 2 5 1












TOTAL 15 27 2


used to provide large volumes of water to assist

The Authority’s main operational assets are its fire

with fire fighting at major incidents. These national

stations, appliances and associated equipment.

resources enhance the Service’s ability to respond

Our assets are located across the Service area to

and protect local communities in the event of major

mitigate the risks that our local communities face.


Fire Stations

Capital budgets

We have invested in many of our stations to ensure

The Authority has a capital budget of £3.402M for

that community facilities are available to the public

2011/12. The Authority’s capital budgets are set to

and our estate improvement programme includes

invest in the ongoing replacement of assets such

provision to further modernise a number of our

as vehicles and equipment, and, where required,

stations to include community facilities that can be

investment in new premises and facilities. The

used to expand our prevention work.

Authority is currently progressing significant estate

Appliances and Specialist Equipment We have a number of specialist vehicles and






stations, new learning and development facilities and a proposed headquarters facility.

equipment including two Aerial Ladder Platforms that are used to respond where we need specialist high level rescue capability. We also have a number of special appliances that we use for specific elements of our work including a swift water rescue

Capital Budgets

team located at Bishop Auckland. Tactical response vehicles are located at Durham and Darlington to respond more effectively and efficiently to smaller


incidents. These specialist appliances are targeted


at helping us to reduce risk and provide us with the capability to provide our response services efficiently and effectively.

Equipment Information Technology TOTAL CAPITAL

2011/12 1.266 1.195 0.145

2012/13 8.841 0.473 0.185

2013/14 2.709 0.438 0.093

2014/15 1.114 0.469 0.230









We also have a number of national resilience assets including an Incident Response Unit and Mass Decontamination Unit which are an integral part of the Service’s operational response to major chemical incidents. We have a High Volume Pump which is used to respond to incidents of severe flooding locally and nationally and which is also

Further information on our assets is available at


Measuring our Success We measure our success through a range of

We review our performance to ensure that we can



fully understand what is working well and where

monitored internally through our own processes

we need to make improvements. Further details of

and we use risk management to divert resources to

our performance are available from the website at

any areas that we feel are under performing.




Performance Management and Measurement Risk Performance Information Operational Performance Information Financial Performance Information Project Management Information

Policy & Performance Review Committee Internal Scrutiny of Performance

Audit and Finance Committee Human Resources Committee

Audit, Inspection and Review

Fire Authority Performance Monitoring


Part 5 - Our Four Year Plans This section of the strategy sets out how we will work towards our aims and objectives to achieve our vision of Safest People, Safest Places. For each individual year of the four year strategy we will publish an annual improvement plan for consultation that includes our IRMP and corporate proposals.

Protection and Prevention Our IRMP protection and prevention plans will focus on ensuring that we keep our communities safe. Our plans will identify and reduce the risks in local communities, ensure that we continue to respond to incidents effectively and competently and work with local people to ensure our contribution to local communities makes a real difference.

Developing Motivated People To Deliver Effectively Our people are our greatest asset and our improvement plans will focus on ensuring that we invest in the skills and potential of all our people. We will consider new ways of helping our people to contribute to the success of our Fire and Rescue Service.

Value Through Sustainable Improvement We face a significant financial challenge over the life of this strategy and our improvement plans will focus on ensuring the Service continues to develop and is fit for purpose. To do this we will identify improvement plans that ensure we provide value for money services to local taxpayers.


Protection and Prevention Protecting people and local communities is at the

To get the balance of protection and prevention

heart of what we do. We work within our local

right we need to ensure that our response services

communities to provide local people with community

are as effective as possible whilst putting in place

safety advice and information to help them to stay

tailored community safety education packages that

safe. We also enforce legislation which helps to

are targeted at our most vulnerable people. We will

prevent incidents from occurring in the first place.

also enforce fire safety legislation to ensure that the places where people live, work and spend their

We need to ensure that we get the balance of our protection and prevention services right. Having the right balance helps us to place our resources in the right place at the right time. This can make the difference between life and death.

leisure time are as safe as possible.


Protection and Prevention Objective 1 – Identify and Reduce Risks County Durham and Darlington Fire Authority is committed to providing first class services to its local communities and to ensuring that the highest standards of service provision are maintained. To do this we need to ensure that we identify our risks and put resources in place to reduce them.

In the next 4 years we will: ▪ Further




▪ We can demonstrate that the resources we based

modeling software to predict future risks

▪ Review the effectiveness of our Community Fire Stations ▪ Work with partners to further develop our

approach to targeting vulnerable people

▪ Develop protocols for sharing risk information with partners ▪ Review our processes for evaluating our

prevention activities

We know we will have been successful if: ▪ We improve our knowledge on the risks in

local areas

▪ We can demonstrate our Community Fire

Stations are helping to reduce risks

▪ Our approach to targeting vulnerable people and




reduction in risk to these people


in a

commit to prevention activities are making

a difference


Protection and Prevention Objective 2 – Respond Effectively and Competently Whilst we are committed to preventing incidents occurring in the first instance, we recognise that we need to be ready to respond when things go wrong. We have a first class response service that is tailored to the risks in our local communities and our staff are trained to the highest standards to ensure that we can get the right people to the right places at the right time.

In the next 4 years we will: ▪ Review the way we provide response services

We know we will have been successful if:

▪ We can demonstrate that our response

to ensure they remain efficient and effective

services are as efficient and effective as possible

▪ Review our response standards to ensure

taking account of the resources that we have


response resources are allocated to risk

▪ Review our approach to responding to smaller

▪ Our response standards continue to reflect the

incident types

risks that our local communities face

▪ Develop and implement a new command and

▪ We

response vehicle arrangements are effective

and efficient

control system to mobilise our resources






▪ Review staffing arrangements to ensure they

continue to meet the needs of the community

▪ We







mobilising system in place that improves on our

existing provision and enables us to respond

to incidents efficiently and effectively

▪ We continue to reduce the number of fires

and injuries in the community


Protection and Prevention Objective 3 – Define and Deliver our Role in the Community To fully realise our role in the community we need local people to understand the services that we can offer, and be in a position to ensure that we can deliver the prevention and protection services that people need. To do this we need to define our role clearly, communicate our role clearly and ensure that our resources are targeted where required.

In the next 4 years we will: ▪ Develop our social marketing work to target our

services where they are most needed

▪ Work with partners and other stakeholders to

assist in embedding the Fire Authority’s role in

local communities

▪ Establish closer links with community groups to help to improve engagement with local


▪ Put in place strategies for working in partnership

with the voluntary sector

We know we will have been successful if: ▪ We can demonstrate how we have targeted our

services in local communities

▪ Our role in local communities is understood and valued ▪ We have a closer working relationship with

groups that work within local communities and

these relationships are used to help keep local

communities safe

▪ We work more closely with the voluntary sector

where this adds value to our work


Developing Motivated People Objective 4 – Invest in the skills and potential of our people To ensure that we provide our services effectively, we need to ensure that our staff are appropriately trained and have the right skills to do their jobs to the standards that the public expect. Our people are our greatest assets and we will ensure that we invest in their skills to realise their true potential.

In the next 4 years we will: ▪ Ensure we have an efficient and effective approach

to staff development

We know we will have been successful if: ▪ We have simplified, yet robust systems in place

to assess and record competence for all staff

▪ Introduce a risk based approach to training and


▪ All of our staff have the skills, knowledge and

understanding to operate successfully

▪ Invest in the training facilities available to

all our staff

▪ We






facilities for all our staff

▪ Introduce a succession planning strategy which

identifies the potential of our staff

▪ We are developing and promoting our highest


▪ Ensure more training is delivered by station

based personnel

▪ We have reduced the cost of the central training

provision without reducing the quality of training delivery to our staff


Developing Motivated People Objective 5 – Optimise the Contribution of Our People By maximising the contribution of every member of staff we can build teams to work together to achieve our vision. To do this we need to ensure that we recognise the contributions of our people and put systems and processes in place to help them to work to the best of their ability.

In the next 4 years we will:

▪ We continue to improve the success we have

▪ Introduce business process improvements which

will reduce bureaucracy and increase efficiency

and effectiveness

achieved in reducing absence rates

▪ We have improved staff satisfaction and


▪ Increase the flexibility of our workforce ▪ We see an increase in staff retention rates ▪ Develop a reward and recognition scheme ▪ Provide improved working environments for our


▪ Develop the health and wellbeing of our staff ▪ Develop an organisation that empowers staff to

take responsibility and decisions commensurate

with their role

We know we will have been successful if: ▪ We improve delivery of service with a reduced

number of staff

▪ Our staff understand the value they bring to the

organisation and are rewarded for their success

▪ We





conducive to modern working practices



Value Through Sustainable Improvement Objective 6 – Develop an Organisation that is fit for purpose To deliver on our vision we need the organisation to be fit for purpose in terms of its governance arrangements and in providing effective and efficient services. Our fire and rescue service needs to be ready for the challenges that lie ahead and the organisation needs to fully understand its financial position and performance to be able to make informed changes to benefit the public.

In the next 4 years we will: ▪ Improve the financial reporting and financial

We know we will have been successful if:

▪ Financial decisions are made at the point of

management at District level

service delivery in each District

▪ Develop our asset management and asset

tracking capability

▪ The







efficiently and effectively and fully understands

▪ Refine our performance monitoring and

how investing in the right assets can assist

in delivering better services for the public

measuring systems

▪ Implement effective information management

▪ The cost and value of assets is fully understood

systems to enable staff to work more effectively

▪ Develop our risk management arrangements

and considered when making key decisions

▪ Organisational performance management and risk

▪ Develop our evaluation procedures







resources are allocated

▪ Staff are enabled to make decisions and

information technology solutions drive more






efficiency ▪ We can demonstrate that our strategies and

plans are effective and making a difference to

our performance


Value Through Sustainable Improvement Objective 7 – Deliver Value for Money Over the next four years we will ensure that everything we do provides value for money to local taxpayers.

In the next 4 years we will:

▪ We procure goods and services that are low

▪ Review our cost base to identify where we are

cost and meet our needs

not competitive with other services ▪ We

▪ Identify






determine where alternative provision offers better value for money

▪ Improve how we share our information with

the public

▪ Ensure our procurement processes drive v a l u e ▪ Continue with the implementation of our carbon

management reduction programme

We know we will have been successful if: ▪ We can demonstrate that our cost base is

competitive based on comparisons with other services and taking account of local needs

▪ Our service provision represent value for money

and we have demonstrated this

▪ Information we hold is freely available to the



demonstrate management










Part 6 - Combined Fire Authority Members Combined Fire Authority Durham County Councillors

Councillor Gordon Tennant

Councillor David Freeman

Councillor Alan Shield

Tel: 0191 5864902

Tel: 0191 373 7485 or 0191 372 5857

Tel: 0191 3725873

Councillor Michele Hodgson

Councillor Barbara Graham

Councillor John Shuttleworth

Tel: 0191 3725802

01388 817 873 or 0191 372 5916

Tel: 01388 517298 or 07714324442

Councillor Allan Bainbridge

Councillor Sarah Iveson

Councillor Mamie Simmons

Tel: 0191 388 2515 or 0191 372 5828

Tel: 01325 319759

Tel: 0191 3869006

Councillor Alan Bell

Councillor Ossie Johnson

Councillor Les Thomson

Tel: 0191 389 1831 or 07827307818

Tel: 0191 3725871

Tel: 0191 3861052 or 0191 3725868

Councillor Jane Brown

Councillor Ralph Liddle

Councillor John Turnbull

Tel: 0191 3725850

Tel: 0191 3725889 or 0191 5860665

Tel: 0191 3725822

Councillor Colin Carr

Councillor George Richardson

Councillor Anne Wright

Tel: 0191 3725883

Tel: 0191 3725811

Tel: 0191 3710585

Councillor Jean Chaplow

Councillor John Robinson

Councillor Richie Young

Tel: 0191 3730028

Tel: 0191 3725896

Tel: 0191 3725872

Chair Labour

Vice Chair Labour






Liberal Democrat




Liberal Democrat





Liberal Democrat

Liberal Democrat





Combined Fire Authority Darlington Borough Councillors

Councillor Nick Wallis

Councillor Jackie Maddison

Tel: 01325 488797

Tel: 01325 253686

Councillor Ron Lewis

Councillor Bryan Thistlethwaite

Tel: 01325 350259

Tel: 01325 485466





Key Advisors to the Authority

Susan Johnson OBE

Jeff Garfoot

Colette Longbottom

Chief Executive Fire and Rescue Service


Clerk and Monitoring Officer

Tel: 0191 3324390

Tel: 0191 3833675

Tel: 0191 3835699

The Combined Fire Authority meets on a regular basis and welcomes attendance from members of the public. For further information visit our website or, alternatively contact the Corporate Planning and Performance Team at Fire and Rescue Service Headquarters (0191 3324297)


Part 7 - Organisational Structure Organisation Structure County Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service is led by a Chief Executive supported by three directors each responsible for a particular function.

Service Leadership Team

The SMT has two specific roles:

The Service Leadership Team (SLT) comprising of

â–Ş Making policy and strategy recommendations

the Chief Executive, Directors and Heads of Service

to SLT

provide the Senior Officer function within the Service. The Combined Fire Authority delegates the

â–Ş Scrutinising

effective management of the organisation and its


resources to the SLT.

performance to







station performance

Service Management Team The Service Management Team (SMT) comprises Heads of Service and Section Heads.


District Manager Adam Hall Telephone: 01325 469128 Mobile: 07786027239 Email:


District Manager Paul Knox Telephone: 0191 5863133 Mobile: 07796610219 Email:


District Manager Fraser McGuffog Telephone:01207 502912 Mobile: 07776226289 Email:


District Manager Robin Turnbull Telephone: 01388 811742 Mobile: 07545207195 Email:

Durham and Chester - le - Street

District Manager Gavin Pallister Telephone: 0191 3324208 Mobile: 07786027228 Email:

Wear and Tees

Local District Teams

District Manager Andy Whitehead Telephone: 01388 602643 Mobile: 07887635767 Email:


Part 8 - Consultation on Our Plans Our Approach to Consultation Our aim is to consult with members of our local communities, businesses, partners and our employees to ensure we continue to meet their changing needs and expectations. It is vitally important to us that we gather and acknowledge views in order for us to further develop and focus our services.

We consult on our strategies and annual plans through a series of forums. The consultation process includes ▪ Public focus groups ▪ Employee representatives ▪ Local and regional business and organisations ▪ Partnership agencies and local authorities ▪ Regional Fire & Rescue Services ▪ Elected Members ▪ Staff meetings ▪ Questionnaires from this plan ▪ Stakeholder meetings Details of the results of our consultation and how to get involved are available on our website at


County Durham and Darlington

Fire Authority Community Safety Strategy 2011/12 Improvement Plan

This annual improvement plan sets out our proposals for 2011/12. The improvement plan contains details of our priorities for 2011/12 which will help us to achieve our vision of Safest People, Safest Places.

Project 1: Review of Special Appliances

Project 5: Premises Risk Information Gathering

We will undertake a review of the way we staff special

We will change the way we record and manage the

appliances including examining the opportunities

collection and management of high risk premises

for using retained duty system personnel. We

information. We will devolve the work to locally

will undertake a feasibility study into this work in

based staff to improve local knowledge and release

2011/12 to understand the advantages and risks of

efficiency savings.

this approach.

Project 6: Health and Safety Training Delivery Project 2: Alternative Crewing

We will change our approach to delivering health

We will assess the options for introducing alternative

and safety training. Health and safety training will

crewing arrangements for some of our lower use

be mainstreamed into the workloads of the risk

fire stations. We will undertake a feasibility study

team to release efficiencies without impacting on

into this work in 2011/12 to fully understand the


advantages of risks of this approach.

Project 7: Embed Equality and Diversity Delivery Project 3: Review Response Standards

As part of our approach to introducing new ways of

We will undertake a review of the response standards

working we will mainstream equality and diversity

across our area. This will involve reviewing our

into the workloads of all managers to release

current performance against our standards and

efficiencies without impacting on delivery.

reviewing whether they remain appropriate.

Project 8: Restructure Back Office Support We Project 4: Improving Resilience To





will restructure the provision of administrative and we

will take action to ensure that effective business continuity arrangements are in place throughout the organisation.

back office services to provide a more integrated service and release efficiencies.


Project 9: Review Shared Service Opportunities

Project 13: Improved Systems for Evaluating

We will review our existing shared service provision

and Developing our Staff

to ensure that arrangements provide value for

We will reduce bureaucracy and increase flexibility

money. We will consider the wider opportunities

in relation to how we train, develop and evaluate

for providing our support services including further

our staff. This will release efficiency savings and


ensure an effective approach to staff development






is implemented.

Project 10: Review Non Risk Critical Fleet

Project 14: New Systems for Command and

The provision of fleet vehicles will be reviewed


to ensure that they are utilised in the most cost

As a result of the cancellation of the national

effective manner. We will also ensure that the

FiReControl project we will undertake a feasibility

number of vehicles in the fleet is aligned to our

study into the development and implementation

new ways of working and revised organisational

of a new command and control system to ensure


we can mobilise our resources effectively and efficiently.

Project 11: Review the Estate Improvement Programme

Project 15: Revise the Service Structure

We will review our estate improvement programme

We will implement a new service structure which

to consider where we can make efficiencies. This

will reduce management costs and focus our

review will include identifying how we can ensure

resources on delivering on our vision and aims.

our estate is fit for purpose and meets the needs of

The new structure will be aligned to the new ways

local communities and staff.

of working which we have identified as part of our Service Transformation project.

Project 12: New Ways of Working for Operational Staff As part of the approach to implementing new ways of working we will review and revise the shift patterns and work routines for our operational staff. This will allow us to maximise capacity with no detrimental impact on our response arrangements.

If you would like this information in another format or language, please telephone 0191 3324297

Safest People, Safest Places

Fire Brigade Strategy  

Strategy Document

Fire Brigade Strategy  

Strategy Document