HAMPSHIRE’S fire service protects its residents well, an inspection report has today revealed.
Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS) found the service makes good use of new technology and innovations to deal with incidents and is effective at preventing them.
The service was also found to manage its finances well, without compromising the safety of its residents.
The well-being and mental health of staff is also prioritised, said the report, but more needed to be done to address issues with morale and people feeling valued.
Cllr Chris Carter, Chairman of the Hampshire Fire and Rescue Authority, said he was pleased with the findings of the report.
“This confirms what the Authority has long been aware of – that the people of Hampshire are served extremely well by a highly effective and skilled fire service,” he said.
“The service not only responds well when incidents occur, but they have an excellent understanding of where the risks lie and how to address them.
“We pride ourselves on ensuring our residents receive an excellent service that provides value for their money and this report is a testament to that.”
Inspectors were impressed by the wide-ranging and innovative ways in which the service works with other organisations to protect people and improve efficiency.
These included the shared Control room set-up with fire and rescue services from Dorset & Wiltshire and Devon & Somerset, and the successful medical co-responding scheme with South Central Ambulance Service.
However, Cllr Carter also recognised the improvements that the service needs to make.
“Our staff are the fabric of the organisation and those that are responsible for keeping people safe across our county,” he said.
“We should be concerned to hear of issues with morale.
“I know the service is committed to creating a culture in which staff thrive and love the jobs they do. I can assure them we will be doing all we can to support them in keeping the people of Hampshire safe.”
Chief Fire Officer Neil Odin said he was pleased the tireless work of his teams was reflected in the report, but that there was more to do to ensure they felt valued.
“I am glad the report recognises the professionalism and excellence our staff deliver to the public of Hampshire,” he said.
“We now need to ensure we continue on our journey to making our service an inclusive and inspiring place to work.”