Automatic fire alarm attendance policy consultation

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Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service is seeking your views on our proposed improvements to our automatic fire alarm (AFA) attendance policy.

Each year, the service sends fire engines on blue lights and sirens to 2,000 incidents, which are not used for sleeping, where the fire alarm has generated an automatic call (referred to as an automatic fire alarm or AFA), or someone has called us because their fire alarm is sounding and there are no signs of fire.

At these incidents, data collected over five years shows that fewer than 0.2% of these were found to be a fire upon arrival.

These call-outs add significantly to risk in the community due to their impact on emergency cover, as well as road risk. Likewise, their disruption of training sessions and wider environmental impact cannot be ignored.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Steve Healey, says:

“We want to align our response with most other fire and rescue services and attend AFAs in non-sleeping risk premises only if the building has been checked by the occupier and signs of fire are confirmed.

“We recognise changes of this nature carry an element of risk and uncertainty, however in this case, failing to act and maintaining the current approach also carries significant risk, specifically regarding the reduction in emergency cover which is experienced when fire engines are tied up responding to AFAs and the road risk whilst on route to them.  We believe that on balance the proposals constitute an overall reduction in risk and if we implement them, we will continually monitor the impact of the changes.”

For further information on the policy changes, please visit the dedicated page on our website.

Share Your Views

We would like your views to help inform our decision-making in this matter.

Please complete the survey available here (opens in a new window).