ESSEX’S first ever Fire and Rescue Plan has been officially launched at a special event held at Chelmsford Fire Station today (Friday, March 1st).
Roger Hirst, the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner (PFCC) for Essex, has developed a Fire and Rescue Plan that sets out the vision and priorities for the delivery of fire and rescue services in Essex. The plan runs from 2019 to 2024 and is the basis on which Roger holds Essex County Fire and Rescue Service to account for its performance. The document mirrors the Police and Crime Plan which sets the priorities for policing in Essex.
It is not only a first for Essex but is the first Fire and Rescue Plan in the country produced by a Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.
Last summer, Roger worked with Essex County Fire and Rescue Service employees, Essex partners, representatives from local authorities and other blue light organisations, such as the police and ambulance service and counterparts from the voluntary sectors, to develop the themes and priorities that this plan includes.
He also arranged for a public survey to be carried out which ran during November through to January. This was completed by more than 2,800 people. The results were independently analysed and showed overwhelming support for the priorities proposed. The plan was developed in partnership with the Police, Fire and Crime Panel who gave it their final approval on Thursday, February 7th.
The eight priorities are:
Enhance prevention, protection and response
Promote a positive culture in the workplace
Develop and broaden the roles and range of activities undertaken by the Service
Help the vulnerable to stay safe
Collaborate with our partners
Be transparent, open and accessible
Improve safety on our roads
Make best use of our resources
Roger said: “For me, safe and secure communities are the bedrock on which we build well-being and prosperity for all. This requires all emergency services to work well together, to be efficient and effective in the service they provide, to prevent incidents wherever possible and to be closely embedded in the communities they serve. The Fire and Rescue Service has a special mission in this, to make Essex a safe place to live, work and travel. We need a plan for a Fire and Rescue Service in Essex which ensures we can help people to stay safe, reduces the number who are killed or seriously injured and minimises the damage to property and businesses.
“I have developed this plan with input from all of those groups and individuals who work in, alongside and with Essex County Fire and Rescue Service. The priorities in the plan reflect what the people of Essex expect from their fire and rescue service.”
Jo Turton, Chief Fire Officer/Chief Executive of Essex County Fire and Rescue Service, said: “This Fire and Rescue Plan has helped us in setting eight priorities that will prepare us for future challenges. It is an important document that has set the foundation in developing our operational plans and activities for the next five years.”
Jo added: “This is an exciting time for our sector and I am very proud to be leading Essex County Fire and Rescue Service into what I believe will be a bright future – in which we will do more than ever to make Essex a safe place to live, work and travel.”