Skip to main content

Developed and maintained
by the NFCC

Control measure

Tactical co-ordinating groups

Control measure knowledge

At a major incident, a co-ordinating group at the tactical level should be established to ensure tactical commanders or managers communicate and co-ordinate effectively with each other and with strategic and operational functions.

Tactical coordinating groups can be convened at the scene of an incident or a remote location (e.g. a police building); this will depend on the type of incident and speed of escalation. They will include appropriately qualified commanders of each agency committed within the area of operations who have relevant decision making powers and will undertake tactical co-ordination of the response.

Although each of the most senior officers at the tactical level will have specific service or agency responsibilities, they should together deliver tactical multi-agency management of the incident. They should ensure that operational commanders have the means, direction and co-ordination required to deliver successful outcomes. Unless there is an obvious and urgent need for intervention, they should not become directly involved in the detailed operational tasks being discharged at the operational level.

The chair of the group must create time for regular briefing, consultation and tasking meetings with counterparts and key liaison officers. To support the chair and other members in these functions, responders may consider the creation of a support group to assist with administration.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Identify, train, exercise and equip personnel to operate in a tactical co-ordinating environment in line with National Operational Guidance: Incident command

  • Ensure that tactical commanders both remote and on-scene are familiar with coordinating group establishment and ways of working, and that they can support the establishment and continuation of a co-ordinating group for as long as is necessary

  • Ensure that tactical commanders who are sent to a coordinating group have an appropriate level of authority to make decisions on behalf of their organisation

Tactical actions

At the tactical coordinating group, tactical commanders should::
  • Assess significant risks and use this to inform tasking of operational commanders

  • Plan and co-ordinate how and when tasks will be undertaken

  • Obtain additional resources if required

  • Establish effective communications with both on-scene commanders and any strategic coordinating group

Incident commanders should:
  • Determine priorities for allocating available resources