Page 19 - Hot News June 2016
P. 19

The incident featured on the cover
of this month’s edition was a fire involving 400 tonnes of waste electrical appliances on the docks. Crews were in attendance for over 18 hours, with the High Volume Pump deployed to ensure we had sufficient water supplies to bring the fire under control. Incidents of this nature can be particularly challenging and it was only due to the hard work and effort from all of the crews involved that the incident was resolved as expeditiously as it was.
Reading through the articles in these
pages, there are numerous examples
of how you demonstrate the values of
the Service every single day. We very
deliberately adopted a simplistic
mission statement: Safer, stronger
communities; Safe effective Firefighters. What each of you do each day demonstrates our core values:
• Make a positive difference to our community • Provide excellent and affordable response
• Respect our environment
• Everyone matters
• Our people are the best they can be
It has never been more important for us as a Service to be aware of our core values and have them in mind when discharging our duties. An example is the launch of the Emergency Medical Response Trial in partnership with North West Ambulance Service (NWAS). There has been a significant amount of preparation for the trial, with extensive training for staff, liaison with NWAS and consultation with the Trade Unions to ensure that Firefighters are effectively supported.
Under the EMR trial, the Service will be contacted when a suspected cardiac arrest is reported near to a fire station. We have the advantage of being able to respond very quickly to an incident type where every second can mean the difference between life and death.
The scheme is being trialled at three stations, Southport, Speke and Wallasey and we have already had some significant successes. As the trial scheme progresses you can expect to see more details in Hot News.
It is also good to see effective prosecutions being reported in this issue. Individuals who breach the fire safety order and fail to take effective fire precautions are putting lives in jeopardy and we will continue to do all in our power to ensure they are prosecuted.
In January 2016 we briefed staff on the ongoing collaboration work between Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service, Merseyside Police and the Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner (OPCC). On 25th April 2016 a joint Chief Officer Group met to consider the next steps.
It was agreed that in order to support this work, and in light of the changing political landscape, we will jointly publish an ‘Invitation to tender’ to engage external consultants to develop an Outline Business Case that considers fully-costed options to transform corporate services across the OPCC, Merseyside Police and Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service. Engaging specialist advisors will allow us to develop an Outline Business Case which will examine the different functions to identify where improvements can be made to service delivery, value for money, improving efficiencies and effectiveness, and productivity and will present options for change for each individual organisation and as a collaborative
endeavour. The Outline Business Case will be completed by October 2016.
This project seeks to build on our joint work to provide the most modern, efficient and effective corporate service support to all three organisations. It must be emphasised that no decisions have been made and that any business case will ultimately be considered by the joint Programme Board and Committee. We will continue to consult Trade Unions and staff associations and to keep you informed throughout.
You will have read on page 13 of this issue that the Service is currently in discussions with the Home Office with regard to becoming the lead authority for the delivery of National Resilience Assurance. A saving of 25% against the 2015/16 budget for National Resilience assurance is also required as a result of departmental savings targets set by the Treasury. I have been requested by the Home Office to facilitate this transition in my capacity as strategic lead for National Resilience and Chair of the NRB. It is my view that Merseyside can undertake the function of Lead Authority for National Resilience Assurance and deliver the 25% saving whilst minimising the impact on the service delivered by the NRAT. Undertaking the function of Lead Authority for National Resilience will maintain the existing National Resilience capabilities from which MFRS derives significant operational benefit.
The work you all do makes an enormous difference to the people of Merseyside across a huge range of areas, and is much appreciated. At a time when the Service is facing unprecedented challenges it is more important than ever that we are able to demonstrate our value and contribution to community safety. I know you all recognise this and will continue to do all you can to advance our cause.
Dan Stephens
Chief Fire Officer

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