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Developed and maintained by the NFCC

Control measure

Operational learning

Control measure knowledge

Following an incident, fire and rescue services should perform debriefs, investigations and use the operational assurance process to identify learning to:

  • Improve public safety
  • Improve the safety of fire and rescue service personnel or others involved during or post-fire activities
  • Share previously unidentified hazards, risks and safe systems of work

Collecting information

Investigation can play an important part in supporting future learning by providing a structured and objective approach to identifying and capturing evidence. This approach should ensure that it withstands scrutiny in its future application and is fit for purpose. Operational learning from any incident type may provide information pertinent to public or responder safety. Learning opportunities should be identified and shared locally and nationally as appropriate to improve intervention and safety, identify hazards and develop safe systems of work.

Once the opportunity for future learning has been identified, careful and early consideration should be given to the type and format of information required.

The environment in which the information will be used is important as this may also have its own rules regarding ethics, storage and data protection, etc.

See National Operational Learning: Good practice guide for fire and rescue services

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Develop guidance, processes and support arrangements for the actions to take to support future learning for internal and external stakeholders, in compliance with relevant legislation and following consultation with partner emergency services and agencies

  • Have a process to share appropriate learning and the findings of investigation with National Operational Learning

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Record and share significant findings from incidents and investigations to inform future practice