Venue: Fire and Rescue Service Headquarters, Bestwood Lodge, Arnold, Nottingham, NG5 8PD
Contact: James Welbourn Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
DECLARATIONS OF INTERESTS
Of the meeting held on 17 June 2016 (for confirmation)
The minutes of the meeting held on 17 June 2016 were confirmed and signed by the Chair.
Report of the Chief Fire Officer
Wayne Bowcock, Deputy Chief Fire Officer at Nottinghamshire and Fire and Rescue (NFRS), updated members on the fire fatalities which have occurred from April 2016 to date and the associated fire investigation and community safety activity carried out by NFRS.
The following points were highlighted:
(a) Between April and October 2016 there have been five fatalities as a result of fire, which is equivalent to the number of all fire fatalities recorded in 2015. A number of cases are awaiting verdict from the Coroner therefore formal cause of death has not been verified by an inquest in all five cases.
(b) NFRS are only required to report accidental fire fatalities to the Home Office. However, NFRS report all fire fatalities to the Committee to create a clearer picture of those at risk and to draw attention to all patterns related to the lifestyle or demographic factors;
(c) Following a fire death, NFRS conduct a ‘Fire Fatal Review’ to consider the lessons learned to prevent similar, future fire deaths and to establish an ‘action plan’ that will clearly record ownership of any agreed priorities;
(d) NFRS has established a demographic pattern of vulnerability from fatalities which have occurred in Nottinghamshire. Those most at risk from serious injury or death as a result of fire in their home are:
§ Middle aged, average age 64;
§ Single, divorced or widowed;
§ Living alone;
§ Suffer from mobility issues
§ Involve alcohol use or smoke.
(e) Having established a demographic of those at risk, NFRS will use this to support its work around the Safe and Well agenda. Having identified those most at risk, NFRS can use this data to support other agencies with managing their demands, for example, NFRS will establish whether it can support the NHS with discharge assessments by assessing risk factors in the place patients are being discharged to. This will support the NHS in discharging patients in a timely manner whilst ensuring patient homes’ are safe;
(f) NFRS has access to extensive data sets as a guide to those who could be most vulnerable within Nottinghamshire and where they might be located, included databases such as ‘Exeter Data’, the City and County Adult Social Care data and NFRS’s own Community Fire Risk Management Information System.
Richard Cropley, Station Manager at Nottinghamshire Fire and Rescue Service, delivered a presentation updating the Committee on the work that NFRS do after fire fatalities in Nottingham, highlighting the following information:
(g) There have been previous cases where vulnerable individuals, known to NFRS and have all shown a degree of factors, such as experiencing mobility issues, mental health issues, alcohol use and are males who live alone. In fact, 68% of national fires involve the over 65s. This has given NFRS an opportunity to incorporate a multi-agency perspective into supporting vulnerable individuals;
(h) The Safe and Well agenda within Nottinghamshire will focus on the following areas: environmental factors and what NFRS can immediately do to ensure properties are safe; people’s health and the NFRS carrying out comprehensive home safety checks.
Following questions from the Committee, the following information was highlighted:
(i) NFRS will continue to educate members of the public about fire safety in their own homes. In the past, NFRS had visited a number of homes to educate and encourage citizens to take responsibility around fire safety in their homes and if requested, will be available to conduct home safety checks;
(j) If there are concerns around vulnerable neighbours who display high risk factors, for example hoarding items in their home, NFRS will try to educate and reassure citizens around how to incorporate safety measures in their homes, including the neighbours;
(k) NFRS have a role to play in supporting isolated members of the community, who may be at risk or a vulnerable member of society. NFRS officers have a unique position in the community in that they are not burdened by some of the difficulties experienced by police officers or social workers and can refer vulnerable individuals to the appropriate agency.
The Committee were introduced to a video created by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service on Safe and Well visits aimed at supporting the most vulnerable in the community. The Video established what a Safe and Well visit is, who conducts the visit and how members of the public could refer someone for a Safe and Well visit. NFRS will see how they can incorporate its message into their Safe and Well agenda.
(1) note the contents of the report;
(2) support the continuing work and development of the targeting of vulnerability in conjunction with partners to benefit those vulnerable in our communities.