The Freedom of Information Act places a general duty on public authorities to adopt and maintain publication schemes which should routinely be made available to anyone.
A publication scheme is both a public commitment to make certain information available and a guide to how that can be obtained.
Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service have a statutory duty to ensure that an effective fire and rescue service is delivered across our county.
The Fire and Rescue National Framework for England sets out the requirement for Fire and Rescue authorities to provide an annual statement of assurance on financial, governance and operational matters.
- Financial accounts for the period 01 April to 31 March are externally audited each year
- Governance is overseen by the Fire Authority
- Operational responsibilities fall under the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 and include the core functions of fire safety, firefighting, road traffic collisions and emergencies.
Our Statement of Assurance can be found in the document below:
Our Annual Governance Statement can be found in the document below:
Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service are committed to protecting your personal data and privacy. Any personal information you provide us with will be processed in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018.
‘Processing’ means the collecting, storing, amending, disclosing and destruction of data.
Reasons for processing personal information
The service process personal information in order for us to carry out emergency and prevention services which include:
- Managing responses to fire
- Road Traffic Collisions (RTCs)
- Water rescues
- Fire prevention though raising awareness and providing advice and assistance
- Safe and Well visits
Types of personal information
The service process personal information which includes but is not limited to:
- Personal details – for example: name, age, address, National Insurance number, family details
- Lifestyle and social circumstances
- Service financial details
- Incidents and accidents details
- Licences, certificates held
- What services have been provided
- Education and employment details
- We also process sensitive personal information that may include:
- Physical or mental health details
- Racial or ethnic origin
- Religious or other beliefs
- Trade union membership
- Lifestyle and social circumstances
- Offences and alleged offences
In order to deliver our services effectively and target those most at risk, the Service works closely and shares information with our partners and other agencies. These include but are not limited to:
- Other emergency services, for example Police/Ambulance Service
- Hospitals, healthcare and welfare organisations
- Local and central government
- Public utilities
- Courts and law enforcements/prosecuting authorities
- Insurance companies
- Coroner’s Office financial organisations, for example Cabinet Office’s National Fraud Initiative
- Press and media
NHS Exeter Health Data
Health data has been produced by the Chief Fire Officers Association (CFOA) and NHS England to help identify over 65s and vulnerable households in order to deliver vital Home Fire Safety Checks and safety referrals.
NHS England, the Royal College of General Practitioners and Fire and Rescue Services (FRSs) in England work together to share information (where relevant, proportionate and necessary) to allow Fire Service personnel to undertake home safety assessments for those who would benefit from a visit.
The majority of fire deaths in the United Kingdom occur amongst the elderly population. Older people are most vulnerable to fire and a number of other risks. A home visit from the FRS is proven to make them safer and can reduce risk significantly.
In one area of the United Kingdom where this work has been piloted since 2007, there has been a significant reduction in fire deaths and injuries which has developed into a current trend well below the national average. So we know this work can save many lives.
The FRS and NHS will continue to work together in the future to ensure the visits undertaken by the FRS are effective in helping make people safe and well.
If you have any queries or wish to request any information that we hold regarding you, please contact us.
As of 01 January 2019, the governance of the Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) transferred to Stephen Mold as the Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner.
This change comes after the Home Secretary approved the Local Business Case to transfer governance arrangements from Northamptonshire County Council (NCC).
Please refer to the Office of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioners (OPFCC) website.
Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service strategies are listed below:
- Asset strategy (650 KB)
- Community Protection strategy (462 KB)
- Equality, Diversity and Inclusion strategy (511 KB)
- Health and Wellbeing strategy (537 KB)
- Income generation strategy (390 KB)
- Prevention strategy (404 KB)
- Response strategy (667 KB)
- Volunteer strategy (485 KB)
- Workforce Development strategy (380 KB)
Gifts and hospitality
Declaration of gifts and hospitality received by Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) is published on our gifts and hospitality register (PDF 296KB).
Details of all NFRS consultations will be available on the Office of the Police, Fire and Crime Commissioners (OPFCC) website.
We will clearly and accurately tell you about:
- The services we provide and how you can access them
- Our standards of customer service and how well we are performing
- How we spend your money
However you contact us, we will:
- Treat you fairly, with courtesy and respect
- Answer your enquiry, or clearly explain the next steps and tell you how long it will take to give you an swer
- Make sure our reply is clear and easy to understand
- Make sure what we tell you is accurate and complete
- Signpost you to other public services if we do not provide them ourselves
When you email, telephone or write to us, we will:
- Respond to your email within 5 working days. If we send you an acknowledgement, we will let you know when you can expect a full reply
- Answer your telephone call within 60 seconds, clearly giving our name and saying where we work
- Respond to your letter within 5 working days. If we send you an acknowledgement, we will let you know when you can expect a full reply
When you meet us, we will:
- Take into account your specific needs when arranging meetings with you
- Welcome you within 2 minutes of your arrival
- Make sure our name badges are clearly visible and show you proof of our identity where appropriate
- Arrive on time for appointments, or let you know if we are delayed
Listening to our customers
We will always consider whether we have got something wrong and take appropriate action.
We will take your views and suggestions into account and monitor your complaints, compliments and comments to ensure that we learn from what you tell us.
If you have encountered an excellent example of customer service or you feel we have not met the customer service standards listed above, we would like you to let us know by contacting us.
Digital service standards
Our digital service standards are based on the LocalGovDigital standards.
- Understand user needs. Research to develop deep knowledge of who the service users are and what that means for the design of the service.
- Follow the Government Service Design Manual, using ‘agile and iterative’ methods to improve and manage our website. This means being flexible in the way we work by making a series of small changes and testing their effectiveness as we go.
- Build a service that can be iterated and improved in response to user need.
- Evaluate what tools and systems will be used to build, host and operate and measure the service, and how to procure them, looking to reuse existing technologies where possible.
- Evaluate what user data and information the digital service will be providing or storing and address the security level, legal responsibilities, privacy issues and risks associated with the service.
- Be able to test the end-to-end service in an environment similar to that of the live version, including all common browsers and devices.
- Make a plan for the event of the digital service being taken temporarily offline, and regularly test.
- Make sure that the service is simple enough that users succeed first time unaided.
- Build a service consistent with the user experience of government digital services, including common government platforms and the Government Service Manual design patterns.
- Encourage maximum usage of the digital service (with assisted digital support if required).
- Identify performance indicators for the service, incorporating existing indicators and publishing to a performance platform, if appropriate.
- Carry out ongoing user research, usability and accessibility testing to continuously seek feedback from users, and collection of performance data to inform future improvement to the service.
Compliments, comments and complaints
Please tell us if you are happy with the service you have received; or if not, why not? We want to know what you think. We want to use your views and suggestions and learn from your experiences as our customer, so we can improve and develop our services.
If you would like to make a compliment, comment or complaint about one of our service areas or to the Authority, please contact us.
What happens next?
- Acknowledge your complaint within 3 working days of receiving it
- Tell you who will be dealing with your complaint and how long it may take us to look into the situation
- Keep you informed of how things are going and if things are likely to take longer than we agreed we will discuss this with you
- Give you an opportunity to talk it through after we have responded if you are still not happy, and we will agree the best way forward
Who else can I contact?
If you have contacted us and we still have not resolved your complaint, you can contact the Office of the Northamptonshire Police, Fire and Crime Commissioner. Following this stage, if you are unhappy with our response you can contact the Local Government Ombudsman. Visit their website at www.lgo.org.uk for contact details.
A special service is where we respond to emergencies other than fires. Some of these services are non-chargeable, and some are chargeable.
Charges applied to any special services undertaken are listed in the document below, this is reviewed on a yearly basis.
Examples of emergency non-chargeable special services
Assistance will be given without charge at ‘lifesaving’ incidents and other ‘humanitarian’ services. Mobilisation to this type of incident will be with the same degree of urgency as for incidents involving fire.
Examples of services in this category are:
- Road, rail or aircraft incidents
- Persons trapped in machinery
- Flooding incidents (danger to life or property)
- Leakages of toxic gas (e.g. ammonia, carbon monoxide)
- Spillages of hazardous materials where a threat to life or health exists (charges may apply for appliances, personnel and recovery and servicing of equipment once the emergency phase of the incident has ended)
- Persons requiring resuscitation (e.g. drowning, gas poisoning)
- Rescues from water
- Building collapse
- Making dangerous structures safe (e.g. wall or roof)
- Providing assistance to other agencies
Note: the above list is not exhaustive, but are examples of the most common emergency special services attended.
Examples of chargeable special services
- Testing dry rise mains
- Effecting entry (no life or fire risk)
- Lift releases (no life or fire risk)
- Spillages of hazardous materials where no threat to life or health exists
- Animal rescues
- Copy of an incident report
Note: the examples given above are not exhaustive and charges may be levied for services not listed.
In addition to the direct charge for the service rendered, Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS) will charge for the recovery, cleaning and/or repair of equipment as a direct result of its use at a non-emergency special service, or its use following the cessation of the emergency phase of an incident. This includes:
- Repair, cleaning, servicing and testing of equipment
- Compressed air cylinder refill
- Replacement or cleaning of Gas Tight Suits
- Replacement of equipment (e.g. salvage sheets, oversize drums)
Note: the examples given above are not exhaustive and charges may, on occasion, be levied for services not listed.
‘B33 – Chargeable services’ is the complete NFRS service policy, this can be viewed below:
Our Fleet and Supplies team operate on a 24 hour, 365 days per year basis, providing emergency back-up in support of the organisation’s operational activity.
The department, headed by the Fleet Manager, is responsible for the management and administration of the service’s transport operations, which includes the repair and maintenance of the service fleet appliances, support vehicles and associated specialist plant and equipment.
Below is the current fleet list for Northamptonshire Fire and Rescue Service (NFRS):
The first legislative requirement to fix fire plugs (fire hydrants) was made in 1847 with the passing of the Waterworks Clauses Act 1847. Ensuing legislation culminated in the Water Industry Act 1991.
There is a duty under the current Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 that the Service secure the provision of water supplies for firefighting purposes. This means that water companies provide the necessary water supply, but the Fire and Rescue Service is responsible for determining the location of hydrants and for their subsequent testing, repair and maintenance.
When a new development within the county is planned, the Fire and Rescue Service determines the risk and recommends the number and position of fire hydrants required to the water authority. Each hydrant is strategically placed to ensure the minimum provision is made, whilst delivering the optimum supply of fire fighting water from a mains system.
Testing and/or inspection
Hydrants shall be subject to a periodic testing and inspection at intervals to be determined by the Fire and Rescue Service, taking into account relevant information such as the location and likely use of the hydrant.
An inspection of a fire hydrant looks at the hydrant pit, frame, cover, the surface surrounding the hydrant and the frost valve, if fitted. The hydrant indicator plate will also be checked.
All joints will be visually inspected for any signs of leakage.
The current national position is that hydrant installations are inspected and tested using the procedure detailed in the Home Office Technical Bulletin 1/1994 (Section 14):
Note: Where it is necessary to conduct initial or regular tests on hydrants, it is important to arrange this with the appropriate water authority.
Tests are carried out on a regular basis. The interval of inspection is left to individual fire authorities to determine. The agreed practice is that this will normally be carried out on an annual basis.
Private Fire Hydrants
Private fire hydrants are located on private water mains that are not the responsibility of the local Water Company or the Fire and Rescue Service. These are generally located on large sites such as hospitals, military establishments, and industrial estates, but may also be installed to provide cover for specific risk properties.
Private hydrants are the responsibility of the owners/occupiers on whose land they are installed, and will not be maintained by either the water company or the Fire and Rescue Service.
Private hydrants should be installed in accordance with the appropriate British Standards and should be compatible with Fire and Rescue Service equipment.
Where private hydrants are installed they should be tested and maintained in good working order by the responsible person(s).
Use of Fire Hydrants
It is illegal to use a fire hydrant to obtain water for anything other than fire fighting unless you are authorised to do so by the water authority or any other person to whom the hydrant belongs.
Unauthorised assess to the hydrant is not allowed. Persons found to be using fire hydrants without the appropriate authorisation are liable to prosecution.
In the event of fire, it can be paramount that firefighters have access to water supplies quickly. Obstruction of fire hydrants, particularly inconsiderate parking could place the lives of you, your family and your neighbours at risk.
A person commits an offence if they damage or obstruct a fire hydrant and will be liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £500 (Fire & Rescue Services Act, Section 42).