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Fire and Rescue Statistics User Group

21st Meeting
of the
Fire & Rescue Statistics User Group
held on
9 January 2007 at 10:30 am
Eland House, London, Room LMR3 ABC


Mr. G. Evans

Chair, FBU

Mr. A. Paish

World Fire Statistics Centre

Mr. S. Emery

English Heritage

Mr. D. Champion

Communities and Local Government

Mr. M. Robinson


Mr. G. Gower-Kerslake

Communities and Local Government (retired)

Mr. T Wilmot

World Fire Statistics Centre

Mr. M Coull

Grampian FRS

Mr. S. Kidd


Ms. S. Pantry

Fire Information Group

Prof. A. Everton

University of Central Lancashire

Mr. D Beverley


Mr. M. Rowan


Ms. S. Wright, Secretary

Communities and Local Government


Mr I Gough

Sprinkler Assoc.

Ms. J Pepper







Samantha to send round the latest FRD organogram, for information.



Glyn Evans to write to the IRMP Steering Group about Prof. Stevens' presentation and to consider looking at the three recommendations as part of the work-streams to develop IRMPs



Samantha to suggest contact(s) for Tony Paish to approach regarding outstanding points on the UK return for WFS, if possible.



Samantha to pursue situation regarding the Group website with Aidan







A full list of FRSUG members is required to select from, which Samantha can provide



Glyn to write to Jane Milne regarding finding an ABI representative to join the Group after Nick Bason's departure.







Sheila to email Samantha a copy of the FIG draft constitution



Glyn is to re-draft the procedure based on comments received and the discussion had with the Group today.



Samantha to send minutes and agendas etc for the last year's meetings to Sheila to add to the site



All - The minutes of the 16th meeting cannot be found. If members have a copy, please send to Samantha.



Tom Wilmot is to put together a paper to discuss at the next meeting


1 Chair's Introduction

1.1 Glyn welcomed everyone to the meeting.

1.2 Dick Pearson has resigned from his position with the FBU. Dave Beverley is his temporary replacement and a permanent replacement is to be announced, possibly Jim Parrot.

1.3 Dave Beverley was introduced to the Group.

1.4 Glyn announced to the Group that he would be bringing his retirement date forward to 31 July 2007. He will be retiring as Chair of the FRSUG, the Warehouse Working Group and all involvement with any Fire Service and Fire Safety Groups.

2 Apologies:

2.1 Mr I Gough, Sprinkler Assoc.

2.2 Ms. J Pepper, FPA

3 Minutes of the 19th Meeting


3.1 The minutes of the previous meeting have been amended to show minor changes and are attached with these minutes for reference.

4 Matters Arising

4.1 Regarding outstanding action 19/6 - 'Dick Pearson to write to the IRMP Steering Group about Prof. Stevens' presentation and to consider looking at the three recommendations as part of the work-streams to develop IRMPs'

Glyn Evans will take forward this action as Dick Pearson has resigned from the FBU.

4.2 It was asked whether the situation around HMFSI mentioned in 4.2 in the minutes of meeting 20 had changed. Mick Robinson gave an update saying that things had not changed, but they are appointing a FRS Chief Advisor who will not likely be in post until June at the earliest. There is a six person team that will oversee the end of HMFSI then a new group will be formed after a meeting with Ministers to discuss a group title.

Work is in progress to identify tasks and processes that will be handed over to the new group and what to pass onto another area. Information from FOSIs and detail on attacks on firefighters will be handed over to the new Chief Commissioner or somewhere else in the Division. HMFSI advice to Ministers and Senior Officials will continue as normal.

4.3 Members felt that British Standard Committees and Operational Committees were suffering from a lack of Government representatives. This was felt to be due to diminishing funds and resource constraints yet is still required to meet guidance obligations and ensure that there was an input from government.

4.4 It was asked what was to happen to the Fire Information Service. Mick said that this was managed in the Central Secretariat of the FRS Directorate.

4.5 Sheila Pantry said that over the last few years, gaps are appearing in information which causes problems and England does not have a big collection of fire and fire related data. It was hoped that the FSC would be a Centre of Excellence, but this has not yet happened.

4.6 It was asked if a Chief Fire Officer or Chair of a Fire Authority Committee was in need of advice or fire policy whether they now need to contact the new body being formed or CFOA. Mick said that in most cases requests would be put to the Chief Fire Advisor.

4.7 Stuart Kidd asked what was to happen to the Crown Premises Group as this is a statutory function. Mick said that it is the only statutory function and a ToR team are to arrange what is to happen to this group. They are liaising with other organisations where CPG may reside in the future. It may not necessarily be in Communities and Local Government or the Inspectorate.

5 Replacement of Group Chair

5.1 Glyn circulated a draft procedure before Christmas containing information on FRSUG background and how he came to be elected as Chair and Ian Evans, at the time of NCFSC, as Vice Chair. Comments were received from David Champion, Geoffrey Gower-Kerslake and Rosemarie Everton.

Point of clarification - in the document sent out by Glyn 'present' means 'present at the meeting'.

5.2 A procedure for electing a Chair and Vice Chair for the Group needs to be produced. Sheila Pantry gave out paper copies of a draft Fire Information Group constitution and an electronic copy, which can be amended to suit our Group's requirements, will be forwarded to all members for comment. Any comments should be forwarded to Sheila or Samantha for collation.

The mechanics for election need to be made transparent and fair as currently it is unclear how and why people are invited into the Group. This information should be put onto the new website too.

Glyn's last meeting will be 25 April 2007 where a decision must be made.

One suggestion was that all nominees could be pre-approved by Communities and Local Government. If there are more than two nominees then a secret electronic ballot should be held. For only one nominee, selection can be made by a simple hand raise.

5.3 Glyn will re-draft the procedure based on comments received and the discussion had with the Group today. When the draft procedure is released, then nominations for Chair should be given. It is permitted to self-nominate.

5.4 Hopefully, the website will provide regular information and updates so the frequency of meetings required will lessen, possibly to once a year.

6 Group website

6.1 Samantha gave a brief update on progress with the FRSUG website to be hosted by CFOA.


6.3 Samantha to send minutes and agendas for the last year's meetings to Sheila to add to the site. The minutes of the 16th meeting cannot be found. If members have a copy, please send to Samantha.

6.4 A link to the Communities and Local Government website should be made as this is likely where people will try to access information first.

6.5 To begin with, the site will be an information only site. Features such as email can be added later. Thought needs to be given to who will look after the management of the information being placed on the site. A support mechanism will be required.

7 Update on IRS Pilot

7.1 The pilot phase of IRS is now complete. Two meetings with FRSs to discuss issues are planned for next week and an extra day has been booked if further discussion is required. By the end of the month we will be in a position to now what the IRS will look like and have a full list of questions and menus.

7.2 The Steering Group have not been involved as timescales did not allow this.

7.3 The main issues raised were the length of time it took to complete a record, the mapping functions (Maps on Taps) and some questions that they were required to answer.

7.4 Some FRSs used pre population from their Command and Control which allowed for quicker completion of the forms.

7.5 Communities & Local Government have been working very closely with the FireControl team to ensure that the convergence products lists are being used as far as possible.

7.6 It was asked whether the analysis of data will remain in FSRB. David said that a research function will exist, but was unsure how many people would be involved this time next year.

7.7 Dave Beverley was to speak to Mick Robinson outside of the meeting to discuss definitions of rescues as some FRSs are using incorrect terminology.


8.1 Stewart Kidd provided some information on Sprinklers. The Fire Sprinkler Association has reformed again providing some services to depleted membership.

There have been changes to building regulations and information is needed especially in relation to large single-storey retail premises. There is a requirement to define 'retail' in terms of fire more specifically than is currently defined e.g. 'considering the warehouse problem' as some new supermarkets have flexible storage compartments in the form of a partition between the storage and retail part.

Until last year there had not been any significant car park fires or deaths in car park fires. There had been 32 deaths in car parks in Europe but only one in the UK in Avon where one death occurred and 28 cars were destroyed. The car park was for retail use with sheltered accommodation above the accommodation units of which had a sprinkler system in place. The fire from the car park spread up the face of the building and entered the flats through the window openings which activated the sprinklers. There is now a debate whether to put sprinklers in non-ventilated car parks. Could 'car parks' be ticked on a FOSI form for one year to see whether there is a problem?

Mick Robinson said Buildings Division in Communities and Local Government set up a working group to look at car park fire issues. Ian Gough is on this working group. FOSIs are reported when there is any fatality, and good or bad effects of fire safety measures or any operational difficulties. Another issue has just gone through on acetylene cylinders. Stewart said that two construction sites that he deals with use Oxy Propane now with no problems so can't understand why Acetylene is still used.

8.2 Tom Wilmot asked whether it was considered that the Committee were adequately reviewing the annual UK Fire Statistics. He asked whether an annual report on progress should be written including information on property losses, deaths and costs to the FRSs and cost of building construction elements. An international comparison of each of these items can be done using WFC statistics.

Glyn said that a report sounds like an attractive idea. Sheila Pantry added that this would be good from a credibility point of view and acknowledges WFC statistics. It is something that can be added to the website too.

Tom Wilmot is to put together a paper to discuss at the next meeting.

8.3 Sheila asked whether the Group could have a presentation on what research is carried out on Governmental Fire Safety matters. Glyn said that Buildings Division have five or six projects going on some of which are nearly complete. Anthony Burd and Brian Martin are potential contacts.

David Champion said that Cath Reynolds is the best person to give an overview in our Division.

8.4 Dave Beverley mentioned that he sat in on a group discussing Reduced Ignition Propensity Cigarettes (run by ASH). They were struggling to find statistics on fires started by cigarettes as opposed to smokers' materials.

Stewart Kidd suggested he speak to Adair Lewis in the FPA.

Date and location of Next Meeting

Eland House, Room LMR 3ABC. Wednesday 25 April 2007, 10.30am - 1.00pm