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Control measure

Follow the standard message process

Control measure knowledge

Fire and rescue services should consider the use of standard message templates to ensure communications between the fire control room and the incident ground are brief. Employing a suite of standard messages will also lead to consistent reporting of incident specific details, which are understood by all and which will assist fire control room operators in recording such data accurately.

This approach should be used for all methods of transmitting information, including radios and telephones. Mobile data terminals linked to mobilising systems can send status messages in text format, but they should also use standard templates to reduce any confusion as to the type and nature of a message.

The call sign or incident commander's name should precede any message; this will assist fire control personnel to accurately identify the log to be annotated with information.

Additional messages that are passed between incident ground and the fire control room should follow predetermined content and structure.

Messages or information exchanged with other agencies should follow the guidance provided in the JESIP publication, Joint Doctrine: the interoperability framework.

Fire control personnel should be mindful that mobilisation messages may influence the behaviour of responding personnel. In particular the messages may affect a driver’s perception of urgency and therefore their driving behaviour. Using standard messages may avoid or minimise this happening.

It may be necessary to provide responding personnel while driving to the incident with:

  • Further relevant information
  • Changes to the incident that may influence the urgency of attendance
  • Changes to access routes

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Develop standardised message formats for use by fire control personnel and operational personnel, that support intraoperability and interoperability

  • Predetermine appropriate content and structure for additional messages that are passed between the incident ground and the fire control room

  • Provide a call sign or name as a prefix to any message sent to the fire control room

Tactical actions

Fire control personnel should:
  • Use the message formats provided when recording information

  • Capture call signs or names as provided by the incident ground

  • Consider providing additional or updated information in an appropriate manner to responding personnel, including those driving to the incident

Incident commanders should:
  • Consider how mobilisation messages might influence the behaviour of responding personnel, including those driving to the incident

  • Use the message formats provided to ensure information sent to the fire control room is clear and concise