Gone are the days of guidance collecting dust on shelves, going out of date and needing to be reprinted.
Our mission was to replace over 8,000 paper-based documents with an online only framework that delivers policy and tactical guidance that is compatible with other emergency services and tailorable to local needs.
Over the last six years we have taken the very best of current practice and experience from across the UK, assessed it, peer reviewed it and made it clear and accessible for the rest of the fire and rescue service. To pull this all together we have tapped into a wide network of subject matter experts - we are proud to say our guidance is written by the service, for the service.
Operational guidance spans a wide range of activity and we developed a framework to make sense of it all; one that uses the hazards encountered at incidents and the measures used to control or eliminate them. We structured the guidance so that it starts with the elements that affect all incidents, then we explore the environments in which we work and, finally, the activities that we do. Below you can see the modular framework we developed, and you’ll see how this works as you explore our website.
For us, it's important to know that our guidance is spot on, based on up-to-date technical expertise, the realities of the world in which we work and that, once it's done, we aren't going to just leave it. We have in place a formal process for reviewing the guidance on a rolling basis. We will return to each guidance area and assess it, work out if it needs updating and get the right people to help us do that. The community effort to create this guidance is incredible.
We are a team of fire and rescue staff based at the London Fire Brigade HQ. We come from lots of different backgrounds and have a wide range of expertise. Some of us have been operational officers and worked at high levels in fire and rescue services across the UK, others come from non-operational roles, sometimes in fire and rescue services, but not always.
Seconded to the team, these officers bring current knowledge and practice and, when their time with us is up, they take their experience back to their own services. It's a win-win.
We also ensure that each of our projects are run by one of our team of experienced professional project managers who bring the rigour of project management methodology that is essential to getting the guidance done.
Funding and governance
The funding to create modern operational guidance and the system we use today comes from the government and each fire and rescue service in the UK.
To make sure we have good governance and assurance, we have in place a strategy board with members drawn from the National Fire Chiefs Council, the London Fire Brigade, the Local Government Association and the Home Office. They in turn are advised by a wider group of stakeholders, making sure we reflect the diverse views of the fire sector. An independent, high-hazard risk consultancy provides the checks and balances along the way.
All in all, it's an amazing thing we've done here. We plan to continue developing the guidance, looking after it for years to come to ensure that all our guidance underpins the important work of the fire and rescue service and keeps our firefighters and the public safe.
Welcome to the home of National Operational Guidance for the UK fire and rescue service.