Large Text | High Contrast | Standard | Site Map | Skip to content | Skip to main navigation

 
Armed Forces Covenantstonewall diversity champion logohighly commended emergency services sector awardelectrical safety councilDAA Dementia Action Allianceemployers network for equality and inclusion memberdisability confident leader

Review of Duty Systems and Ways of Working

In March 2017 Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Authority approved our Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP) 2017-2021 which went live in April 2017. This plan is a core strategic document which drives all our work to respond to all foreseeable risks in Derbyshire as well as meet the financial challenges we continue to face. By 2019-2020 the Service needs to find £1.6m in savings.

We manage risk through our activities in Prevention, Protection and Response, and are always looking for other ways to improve how we work. Our ‘Service development themes’ provide the strategic focus for us to do this and are supported by yearly action plans.

The Service development theme: ‘Review of Duty Systems and Ways of Working’ sets out to look at how we match our resources to the levels of risk in the community, including assessments of the type, number, and location of resources that keep communities safe. To do this, we undertake a piece of work called the Emergency Response Review.  This service development theme also allows the Service to use an appropriate blend of prevention, protection and response activities to keep our communities safe.  We ask communities and stakeholders for what they think an appropriate blend of the various activities should be. We ask partners what activities we could do on their behalf/ jointly. Ultimately, we need to ensure that our resources are matched to the risks and activity in a balanced and proportionate way.

As part of a Year 1 Action Plan 2017-2018, we have reviewed the duty systems at Matlock and Glossop. These stations were chosen based on extensive and thorough data and performance analysis carried out in 2016 within our Emergency Response Review and as part of our risk analysis within the IRMP. This identified the need to review the overall cost effectiveness of these stations based on the limited number of incidents attended, the reducing risks in the communities and the overall running costs. This review was presented to Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Authority and approval was given to explore alternative staffing systems. In September 2017 a range of 19 options was presented with a shortlisted three options for consultation selected based on their appropriateness to meet demand, manage the risk in the area, their ability to be implemented and provide financial savings without detrimentally affecting the response times.

Matlock and Glossop are both currently on a duty (shift) system called Day Crewing which is where full time firefighters at these stations provide an immediate response from the fire station between 08:00 and 18:00 together with an additional two hours each day (06:00 to 08:00) on stand-by at housing at the station provided by Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Authority. Outside of these hours, the same personnel provide response cover under the on-call duty system.

On-call firefighters are members of the community who book themselves available to respond to emergency calls from home or work. They are notified of emergency calls via personal pagers that they carry with them, and then they must reach the fire station within an allocated time (usually within five minutes) of being paged.

Matlock Fire Station:

The station is located on Chesterfield Road and has 12 houses (on Turnpike Close). Matlock is a town of approximately 10,000 population (Census, 2011) and is located in the middle of the county in the Derbyshire Dales District. Nearby fire stations include Bakewell, Chesterfield, Clay Cross, Alfreton, Crich and Wirksworth.

The station is the base for the following appliances:

  • D17P1 Water Ladder – crewed on a day staffing basis by an establishment of 14 personnel across 2 watches.
  • D17M1 Water Ladder – crewed on a retained basis by 16 personnel (as of August 2017).
  • D17R2 Rope Rescue – staffed by alternate crewing arrangements with full time crews from D17P1.
  • D17R3 Water Rescue – staffed by alternate crewing arrangements with full time crews from D17P1.
  • D17R4 Animal Rescue – staffed by alternate crewing arrangements with full time crews from D17P1.
  • D17V1 Emergency First Responder Car – crewed by retained staff undertaking a pilot scheme with East Midlands Ambulance Service. Emergency first responder incidents are not included in the analysis that follows.

Costs (2015/16):

Employee Costs

Repairs and Maintenance

Rates

Energy Costs

Other

Total Cost

£665,000

£48,000

£13,000

£9,000

£61,000

£796,000

Activity

The number of mobilisations of Matlock’s appliances has reduced by around 40% since 2003/04, and the table provides a breakdown of mobilisations to incidents in Derbyshire over the five years 2012/13 to 2016/17. 

Callsign:

D17P1

D17M1

D17R2

D17R3

D17R4

Year

Day

Night

Day

Night

Day

Night

Day

Night

Day

Night

2012/13

217

102

28

21

33

5

32

17

40

7

2013/14

164

81

22

23

15

4

21

5

33

3

2014/15

147

93

32

25

18

10

13

12

20

7

2015/16

191

70

23

18

31

8

11

6

30

8

2016/17

151

78

23

11

40

14

8

0

38

15

There is a greater demand for fire service resources during the day than during the night. On average, 68% of Matlock’s appliance mobilisations occur during the day, and 32% at night.

Resources

In addition to responding to emergencies, and training for those emergencies, the role of a modern firefighter includes prevention activities such as undertaking safe and well visits, community engagement and hazard spotting. Most of these activities take place during the day.

However, the existing crewing arrangements at Matlock mean resources are not aligned with demand. During 2016/17, we had more firefighters available at night when demand is lower, and we had fewer firefighters available during the day when they could be more constructively utilised attending incidents or undertaking prevention activities.

In May 2016, the Office for National Statistics published its population projections for local authorities. For the Derbyshire Dales district, the population projection for 2026 is 73,000, an increase of 2.2% over the estimated population in 2016. A corresponding increase in incident numbers means that in the district, we could expect to attend 12 additional incidents per year by 2026. This would still leave incident numbers in Derbyshire Dales 40% lower than in 2003/04.

Glossop Fire Station:

The station and its 12 houses are located on Whitfield Park. Glossop is a market town of approximately 18,000 population in the High Peak district in the northwest of the county, close to the border with Greater Manchester. Nearby fire stations include New Mills and Whaley Bridge in Derbyshire and Hyde in Greater Manchester.

The station is the base for the following appliances:

  • D16P1 Water Ladder – crewed on a day staffing basis by an establishment of 14 personnel across 2 watches.
  • D16M1 Water Ladder – crewed on a retained basis by 12 personnel (as at August 2017).
  • D16T4 4x4 and trailer – used for transporting the Argocat, an off-road vehicle carrying high-pressure water tanks primarily used at moorland incidents.

Costs (2015/16):

Employee Costs

Repairs and Maintenance

Rates

Energy Costs

Other

Total Cost

£630,000

£14,000

£20,000

£9,000

£71,000

£744,000

Activity

The number of mobilisations of Glossop’s appliances has reduced by more than 50% since 2003/04, and the table provides a breakdown of mobilisations to incidents in Derbyshire over the five years 2012/13 to 2016/17. 

Callsign:

D16P1

D16M1

D16T4

Year

Day

Night

Day

Night

Day

Night

2012/13

125

99

12

14

2

0

2013/14

125

89

8

18

1

1

2014/15

109

103

15

17

2

2

2015/16

138

93

11

8

1

2

2016/17

117

91

15

22

3

1

There is a greater demand for fire service resources during the day than during the night. On average, 55% of the appliance mobilisations occur during the day, and 45% at night.

Resources

In addition to responding to emergencies, and training for those emergencies, the role of a modern firefighter includes prevention activities such as undertaking safe and well visits, community engagement and hazard spotting. Most of these activities take place during the day.

However, the existing crewing arrangements at Glossop mean resources are not aligned with demand. During 2016/17, we had more firefighters available at night when demand is lower, and we had fewer firefighters available during the day when they could be more constructively utilised attending incidents or undertaking prevention activities.

In May 2016, the Office for National Statistics published its population projection for local authorities. For the High Peak district, the population projection for 2026 is 94,100, an increase of 2.6% over the estimated population in 2016. A corresponding increase in incident numbers means that in the district, we could expect to attend 16 additional incidents per year by 2026. This would still leave incident numbers in the High Peak district 43% lower than in 2003/04. 

With the demand for our fire and rescue resources required during the day being greater, and the need to achieve savings, alternative duty (shift) systems have been proposed away from the current provision. The aim of these being to better align our resources to the demands, risks and financial challenges we face.


Options

This consultation seeks your views on which alternative staffing system you think Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Authority and Derbyshire Fire and Rescue Service should adopt in the future.

Below are the options that we have shortlisted as alternatives to our current arrangements. These have been shortlisted from a range of 19 options that were presented to our Fire and Rescue Authority in September 2017 and were reviewed for their appropriateness to meet the demand, manage the risk in the area, ability to implement the system and provide savings. Reduction in Full-time numbers will not result in redundancies.


MATLOCK

Present Crewing

 

Option 1: Monday to Friday

Option 2 (our preferred option): Monday to Friday Plus

Option 3: On call

Full-time crews availability

99% availability all week 0800 to 1800.   Plus stand-by from the on-site houses 0600 to 0800

99% availability Monday to Friday during the day.

99% availability Monday to Friday during the day plus weekends

Not applicable

On-call

Provide availability currently 24/7 – 82% of the time

Increase in personnel to provide greater availability

Increase in personnel to provide greater availability

Provides all the cover

Staffing

14 Full-time; 15 On-call

8 Full-time; 22 On-call firefighters

9 Full-time; 22 On-call firefighters

22 On-call firefighters

Cost Approx.

£738,000 each year plus costs of running houses

£485,000 each year

£535,000 each year

£274,000 each year

Savings (excluding houses)

Not applicable

£275,000 each year

£225,000 each year

£487,000 each year

Response times to incidents

10 min 14 sec Full-time

14 min 22 sec On-call

10 min 14 sec Full-time

14 min 22 sec On-call

10 min 14 sec Full-time

14 min 22 sec On-call

14 min 22 sec On-call

Housing provision

Provided to Full-time firefighters

Not required

Not required

Not required

Additional information

We believe that it is inefficient to continue employing the existing number of Full-time firefighters [14] as the number of incidents they respond to continues to decrease,. We have evidence that the response times can still be achieved but using a mix of staffing that is more suited to the type of incidents that occurs in this area, whilst also making a considerable saving.

This option provides guaranteed resilience during times of greatest demand and increases our On-call availability. We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees.

This option provides Full-time cover during the day, supported by On-call availability at night and additional Full-time resilience at the weekend which aligns to our risks. We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees and the optional uptake of weekend cover.

This option would give our On-call employees full ownership of the risk management in the area and align our resources to risk.  We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees and therefore may not guarantee 99% availability.

Below are the options that we have shortlisted as alternatives to our current arrangements. These have been shortlisted from a range of 19 options that were presented to our Fire and Rescue Authority in September 2017 and were reviewed for their appropriateness to meet the demand, manage the risk in the area, ability to implement the system and provide savings. Reduction in Full-time numbers will not result in redundancies.


GLOSSOP

Present Crewing

 

Option 1: Monday to Friday

Option 2 (our preferred option): Monday to Friday Plus

Option 3: On call

Full-time crews availability

99% availability all week 0800 to 1800.   Plus stand-by from the on-site houses 0600 to 0800

99% availability Monday to Friday during the day.

99% availability Monday to Friday during the day plus weekends

Not applicable

On-call

Provide availability currently 24/7 – 69% of the time

Increase in personnel to provide greater availability

Increase in personnel to provide greater availability

Provides all the cover

Staffing

14 Full-time; 12 On-call

8 Full-time; 22 On-call firefighters

9 Full-time; 22 On-call firefighters

22 On-call firefighters

Cost Approx.

£738,000 each year plus costs of running houses

£485,000 each year

£535,000 each year

£274,000 each year

Savings (excluding houses)

Not applicable

£275,000 each year

£225,000 each year

£487,000 each year

Response times to incidents

10 min 38 sec Full-time

13 min 20 sec On-call

10 min 38 sec Full-time

13 min 20 sec On-call

10 min 38 sec Full-time

13 min 20 sec On-call

13 min 20 sec On-call

Housing provision

Provided to Full-time firefighters

Not required

Not required

Not required

Additional information

We believe that it is inefficient to continue employing the existing number of Full-time firefighters [14] as the number of incidents they respond to continues to decrease,. We have evidence that the response times can still be achieved but using a mix of staffing that is more suited to the type of incidents that occurs in this area, whilst also making a considerable saving.

This option provides guaranteed resilience during times of greatest demand and increases our On-call availability. We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees.

This option provides Full-time cover during the day, supported by On-call availability at night and additional Full-time resilience at the weekend which aligns to our risks. We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees and the optional uptake of weekend cover.

This option would give our On-call employees full ownership of the risk management in the area and align our resources to risk.  We are aware of the possible challenges for recruiting extra On-call employees and therefore may not guarantee 99% availability.


The following key documents are available to support this consultation, we encourage you to read these before you respond: