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Hazard
Failure to review information

Hazard Knowledge

The commitment and leadership of the strategic management team is essential to the success of any management system. The service strategic operational risk management policy should set strategic direction, demonstrating how the duty for the provision of operational risk information is linked to the operational duties of firefighters and commanders. It should also describe how this information can be shared with other agencies and where this would be appropriate.

Managing operational risk information is part of an integrated approach to managing risk and ensuring safe systems of work for all employees. Policies should:

  • Determine specific responsibility for operational risk information, with a defined role in terms of establishing, implementing and maintaining processes including audit and review, in line with the approach advocated by the HSE in Managing for health and safety (HSG 65).
  • Determine and make available those resources required to implement, maintain and develop these processes
  • Ensure there is clarity of responsibility between partner organisations, different functions in the fire and rescue service and the roles and responsibilities of managers
  • Ensure clear documentation, document control and security procedures are in place
  • Ensure that allocation of roles and responsibilities takes account of the competency, level of authority and capacity of individual employees
  • Ensure all aspects of information management (relating to providing information for operational pre-planning, incident management and post-incident analysis) is subject to review
  • Ensure continuing performance monitoring for relevant personnel, including assessments of their competency and use of the system and ensure any gaps in the effective management of the system are identified
  • Ensure that there are effective communication and data sharing protocols in the organisation, and between the partner organisations involved in supplying and receiving operational risk information

Organisational planning should establish, implement and maintain procedures for hazard identification, risk assessment and determining the necessary controls. In the context of operational risk information, the hazard identification and risk assessment processes should take into account the:

  • Range of possible activities related to firefighting, road traffic collisions and other emergencies
  • Range of employees who may be involved in using operational risk information
  • Capabilities, and likely behavioural responses, of those employees and other persons likely to be involved
  • Incident command system and management procedures used
  • Protective equipment, vehicles, rescue and firefighting equipment and any limitations of employees and their equipment

To judge the effectiveness of arrangements for providing and managing operational risk information, procedures should be in place to monitor performance on a regular basis. The procedures should:

  • Provide qualitative and quantitative measures of performance at each stage, including post incident reviews
  • Regularly monitor and report on the measures relating to performance of the plan
  • Record and communicate the results of monitoring - providing information on how the system operates in practice, identifying areas where corrective action is required, providing a basis for continual improvement and providing feedback

Policies and procedures developed for managing operational risk information should be consistent and should comply with data protection and information system security