AF&RS revised Service Plan 2021-2024 approved by Avon Fire Authority

Avon Fire & Rescue Services’ (AF&RS) Service Plan 2021-2024, which outlines how AF&RS will use its resources to prevent, protect, respond and be resilience to the needs of our communities, has been unanimously approved by Avon Fire Authority.

The Service Plan is reviewed and refreshed annually, setting out what AF&RS will do to ensure it continues to deliver a high-quality, effective and efficient, value for money fire and rescue service.

Following the launch of the plan in 2019, this is the second annual refresh of the Service Plan, which sets out AF&RS’ aims through two strategic priorities of Making our Communities Safer and Making our Service Stronger.

Updates to the Service Plan 2021-2024 include:

  • Inclusion of a ‘Chief Fire Officer’s Service Management Statement’ explaining how AF&RS is matching its resources to community risk.
  • A commitment to ‘Making Every Contact Count’ to ensure we reduce risk to the most vulnerable in our communities.
  • The exploration of creating longer term interventions to support our excellent schools programme which includes fire, water and road safety.
  • Prioritisation of our fire safety engagement with local businesses where our intelligence data gathering highlights a risk.
  • Ongoing consultation on a more flexible contract for our on-call staff.
  • The improvement of our geographical directory data held by our operational systems.
  • The ongoing assurance of ensuring our workplaces are risk assessed for the health, safety and welfare of our staff against COVID-19.

Mick Crennell, Chief Fire Officer for AF&RS, said: “Reviewing our Service Plan annually allows us to reflect, refresh and review our key Service objectives and focus on how we can improve them.  This ensures, as a Service, we are and continue to make our communities safer and make our Service stronger.

“This past year has been like no other and alongside the rest of the world; we have found ourselves in unchartered territory due to the COVID-19 pandemic.  As a Service and as local communities, we have all been challenged in responding to the ongoing and dynamic events of the past year.

“I would particularly like to thank our fantastic staff who have adapted and responded to the situation with diligence and resilience.  This Plan demonstrates how we have continued to maintain and improve our services to our communities. While I’m proud our ongoing achievements, this is not the end of our journey.”

Achievements from the Service Plan 2021-2024 include:

  • Recognised by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS) for the contribution made by our staff to the local and regional response to the pandemic.
  • Introduced our new response standards and new procedure for responding to automatic fire alarms in non-domestic properties.
  • Introduced on-call support officers to provide tailored support for on-call stations.
  • Invested in our IT infrastructure and upgraded our connectivity.
  • Launched our new Diversity, Inclusion, Cohesion and Equality (DICE) training programme.
  • Became members of Procurement in Partnership.
  • Maintained physical Home Fire Safety Visits (HFSV) during all phases of lockdown for the most at risk members of our community.

Councillor Donald Davies, Chair of Avon Fire Authority, added: “On behalf of the Fire Authority, we are delighted to be publishing this Service Plan 2021-2024 with our communities. 

“As an Authority, we have a responsibility for providing the community with information and fire safety advice, making our roads safer and ensuring an effective response to emergencies across the area.

“The approved, refreshed Service Plan sets out how AF&RS will remain alert and flexible to the ever changing environment, so we can continue to keep local people safe in the most effective and efficient way.

“I would also like to thank Avon Fire & Rescue Service for all they have done to keep the people they serve safe these past many months.  The Service has gone above and beyond to support the wider COVID-19 response effort and should be proud of how they have adapted to the evolving needs of our communities during this time.

“Despite any further challenges ahead, we have a proud, professional and passionate workforce who care for and are committed to ensuring the safety of the communities they serve.”

Read the Service Plan 2021-2024 here.