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Fire and Rescue Statistics User Group

39th Meeting of the
Fire & Rescue Statistics User Group
held on
26th November 2013, 11.00 am – 3:00 pm in
Eland House, Victoria St, London

1. List of attendees

Adedayo Akinfolajimi


Charlotte Cheal


Daniel Shaw


Daniel Walker-Nolan

Electrical Safety Council

Dave Berry

UK Timber Framed Association

Dave Sibert


David Wales

South East Fire Investigation Group

Denis Davis

Fire Sector Federation

Gavin Sayer

DCLG Fire stats

Heidi Jones


Jeremy Fraser-Mitchell


Kirsty Bosley

Scottish Government – Fire research and statistics

Louise Craig


Nadia Al-Sabouni

Buckinghamshire FRA

Nazneen Chowdery


Phillipa Haxton

Scottish Government – fire research and stats

Rob Gazzard

South Eastern England Wildfire Information Group

Steve Emery

English Heritage

Stuart May


Stewart Ross

Scottish Fire and Rescue Service

Tony Paish

UK representative of the World Fire Statistics Centre

Note – a list of acronyms is attached at the end of this minute

2. Chair’s Introduction

Kirsty Bosley welcomed everyone to the meeting. She expressed her congratulations to Sheila Pantry on her lifetime achievement award, which was seconded by the group. There was thanks to Nazneen who will be handing over the role of secretary to Daniel Shaw.

3. Apologies

Simon Flood, Sheila Pantry, Richard Hall

4. Minutes of the 38th meeting

An action on item 7 was attributed to Dennis Davis but it is believed to be for Simon Flood instead. Members accepted the rest of the minutes of the previous meeting as true record. It will now be published on the FRSUG website and on the Knowledge Hub.

Action: Daniel Shaw to send the approved minutes to Sheila Pantry for putting on the FRSUG website. Daniel Shaw to post them onto the Knowledge Hub. Simon Flood to check whether the action has been correctly attributed to him.

5. Matters arising

Gavin gave an update on the DCLG progress on the economic cost of fire model (Action 6 from previous meeting), stating that it is DCLG’s intention to complete the publication which had been delayed by work on the Knight report.

Gavin also updated on the Government’s response to the Knight Review which is pending ongoing discussions with the Home Office over working with other blue light services. Statistics used in the monitor publication have been used to support this response and publication is expected soon.

6. FRSUG proposed action plan 2013

Sheila Pantry provided an update via email asking for updates to be provided to her and promoting the OSH Update which covers a wealth of fire health and safety information.

Action: ALL – Members to check their contact details and to provide Sheila Pantry with any changes or news.

Action: Decision was taken to pass on discussion of the action plan and keep all actions on it as is.

d. Economic cost of fire – work being taken forward

Dennis Davis and David Sibert gave an update on the work to being done to take forward the cost of fire work now that DCLG will be ceasing production. The intention is for DCLG to complete the current cycle and produce a final 2010 version of the report.

Working alongside the Fire Sector Federation they have now worked up proposals which they intend to put out to tender by Christmas 2013. The work has been split into two streams:

  1. The Biannual Economic Cost of Fire report, which has 1 organisation to tender
  2. The value of the fire sector, which has 2 organisations to tender

These tenders are for feasibility studies to determine the value of the fire sector.


No reports on Fires of Special Interest and Incidents of special interest

f. Publications since last meeting

National Reports

7. Scottish Report

Due to Scotland changing to a single service there will be changes to statistical publications. Incident statistics will still be managed centrally but Scottish Government will be consulting on how to present single service information geographically. The likelihood is to report by local authority. This operational data collection has the potential to be devolved to the service in future.

The new Scottish Fire Framework includes targets such as the improving the rate of accidental dwelling fires. SFRS reporting on this as part of an ongoing mid-year review process.

HMSFI has been leading on inspections of the new service and has published its first report.

Stewart Ross shared some hand-outs of analysis work he had done which brought out the key point that although there are a lot less fires in the early hours of the morning you are much more likely to have a fatality if there is a fire at this time. He wants to build up the SFRS analytical capability to analyse data in this way and also to focus on how to achieve realistic targets when looking at reductions encountered previously. Anyone interested in this work can get in touch with Stewart to share ideas.

8. Wales update – Item Postponed

Due to Richard Hall being unable to attend

9. DCLG update

Gavin reported that the Fire Statistics Team had run a session at the DCLG Statistics User Engagement Day the previous day. Due to time pressure he was not able to present this to the meeting.

Action: Gavin circulated slides of the presentation after the meeting.

10. IRS Review

Stuart May from CFOA gave an update on the progress on the review of the IRS.

DCLG’s IRS Helpdesk is sifting through all requests for change and considering the benefits and additional burdens these may impose. This is being carried out involving a CFOA-led fire and rescue service working group.

The team has been working with the Government Digital Service, and the project is awaiting final clearance of its business case to go through hopefully by Christmas.

It was noted the new system aims to include new functionality to users allowing them to select data and view it in a dashboard structure. Several FRSUG members had fed their views into the IRS review and were satisfied that the interaction was working well.

Action: Stuart to look at opening up the website to FRSUG members to allow them to input on consultations and for a Fire Service Federation representative to be involved in the consultation also.

11. The FPA Database

FPA Risk Authority database – Charlotte Cheal gave a presentation demonstrating the FPA database.

This collects data via a web based form from insurance firms who are FPA members on instances where a fire results in over £100k in damages or business interruption, or a fatality, or a sprinkler activation.

It was noted that there is currently an underreporting of data and a project was underway with the Charted Institute of Loss Adjusters to address this.

FRSUG express that access to this data would be welcomed

Action: Charlotte to circulate links to videos showing how to interact with data and the tool

12. Electrical Safety Council – Findings from Safer Products, Better Business

Daniel Walker-Nolan presented some of the key findings from this report. Electrical fires occur more frequently in products/appliances and not in installations. The ESC is shifting its focus more onto products to tackle this issue.

It was shown that the number of product/appliance fires has remained fairly steady over the last five years and that there were several problems which were causing this, especially the difficulty of tracking and recalling faulty products. It was estimated that there are up to 1 million faulty appliances in homes today.

The report recommends more pre market risk analysis from manufacturers and a statutory requirement for them to plan out how to recall products. A system to efficiently track products would be required also. There are several barriers to making these recommendations due to a difficulty in sharing information and customer’s behaviour.

The ESC has a widget on their website which allows user to check the recall status of their appliances.

13. Identifying the needs of a research infrastructure on the fire and rescue service

Nadia Al-Sabouni introduced the work she has been taking forward looking at the potential for a Knowledge Network within the fire service.

The knowledge network aims to be a ‘go to’ resource for sharing research and reporting across the fire service.

Workshops have been going on across the country with over 40 different organisations using innovative techniques to draw out what the requirements for the network would be. Nadia has shared these outcomes with the group and will share it on the FRSUG web. There is a Knowledge Network newsletter available which collates a lot of the data in one place.

The project is now being taken forward with Nadia aiming to complete a functional specification of the network and look at the feasibility of any solutions.

The group noted there was potential crossover of this project with other areas of work and Nadia should be put in touch with those

Action: Nadia to share papers and FRSUG members to review current functional specification and provide her with thoughts and comments. FRSUG users to contact Nadia with details of any related projects currently ongoing.

14. AOB

Tony Paish reported that the World Fire Safety Centre has ceased to exist and so his role on FRSUG also ceases. The chair expressed her thanks and appreciation to Tony for his contributions and the part that he has played during his many years as a FRSUG member. The rest of the group resoundingly endorsed this appreciation.

Date of next meeting to be agreed by doodle poll expected in around March 2014

Action: Daniel to organise

15. Acronyms used in this minute


Building Research Establishment


Chief Fire Officers Association


Department for Communities and Local Government


Fire Brigades Union


Fires of Special Interest / Incidents of Special Interest


Fire Protection Association


Fire and Rescue Authority


Fire and Rescue Statistics User Group


Fire Sector Federation


Institution of Fire Engineers


International Standards Organisation


Occupational Safety and Health


South Eastern England Wildfire Information Group


Scottish Fire and Rescue Service