In summer 2017, Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) began inspecting the efficiency and effectiveness of all fire and rescue services in England. Formerly known as Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary (HMIC), the name was changed to reflect the addition of fire and rescue services.
HMICFRS independently assesses fire and rescue services on how we prevent, protect against and respond to fires and other emergencies as well as how well we look after our staff.
In summer 2019 HMICFRS inspected ECFRS for the first time and in December 2019 it published a report of its findings.
Overall summary of inspection findings from HMICFRS
We are satisfied with some aspects of the performance of Essex County Fire and Rescue Service (FRS). But there are several areas where the service needs to make improvements.
We judged Essex County FRS to require improvement to the effectiveness of its service. It requires improvement to how it:
- understands the risk of fire and other emergencies;
- prevents fires and other risks; and
- protects the public through fire regulation.
But it is good at responding to fires and other emergencies. And its response to national risks is good.
The service’s efficiency requires improvement, in particular to how it uses resources. But it is good at making its services affordable.
The way Essex County FRS looks after its people requires improvement. We judged the way it promotes the right values and culture to be inadequate. It requires improvement to how it:
- gets the right people with the right skills; and
- ensures fairness and promoting diversity.
But it is good at managing performance and developing leaders.
Overall, we would like to see improvements in the year ahead.
- READ: The full HMICFRS report
- READ: ECFRS press release
- WATCH: Chief Fire Officer/ Chief Executive, Jo Turton, and Deputy Chief Fire Officer, Rick Hylton, respond to the report.
Previous inspection news
Formal report following Essex County Fire and Rescue Service Peer Review
In October 2018 a team of colleagues from other Fire and Rescue services and the Local Government Association visited ECFRS and met with more than 150 colleagues during a series of timetabled interviews, focus groups and station visits.
The report provides honest and constructive feedback on the Service, highlighting strengths and suggesting areas where there is room for improvement.
The report will now be used to drive forward improvements.