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Control measure
Use an interpreter call handling agency

Control measure knowledge

A wide variety of languages are used by both residents and visitors to the UK. Where a caller in a stressful situation and English is not their native language the ability to quickly gather information can be impaired.

A number of agencies who offer rapid access to interpreting services are available, covering a wide range of languages.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Have arrangements in place to allow control room operators to handle calls for assistance from members of the public who are unable to communicate in English
  • Develop procedures to ensure fire control room operators can quickly establish if interpretation services are needed. The control room operator should be able to identify the language required

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Identify which foreign language requires interpretation and apply service procedures to gather information from the caller