Fire & Rescue Services

ORH understands the changing demands on fire and rescue services and the need for greater resilience and flexibility, often in the context of significant constraints on finance and resources.

We support organisations in their planning by identifying and appraising options for better service delivery, covering all aspects of fire service provision across both operations and control.

Our work often informs the Integrated Risk Management Planning (IRMP) in UK services and our data-led methodology is highly valued during the inspection process. In particular, we use analysis and modelling to understand the risk of fires and other emergencies, assess response times, and identify options that improve the effectiveness of the service.

ORH has completed strategic reviews for a diverse range of fire and rescue services around the world, taking an evidence-based approach. We have produced development plans for fire services where population is rapidly increasing, and supported decision making regarding efficiency savings. This requires sophisticated forecasting and consultation with the service.

Using our knowledge of fire services and how to model these complex systems, we have developed software to help manage resources dynamically: the Dynamic Cover Tool (DCT). HMICFRS highlighted the DCT’s capabilities at recent inspections of fire and rescue services that use this software in control, and the Wales Audit Office has cited the DCT as an example of best practice. The DCT enables services to:

  • Understand risk on a live basis and improve coverage using standby moves
  • Plan for upcoming issues with the availability of resources
  • Review deployments and coverage during major events

Case Studies

ORH combines analysis, modelling and consultancy to answer questions such as:

How can a fire service make substantial efficiency savings with minimal impact on cover?
(London Fire Brigade)

What is the most appropriate way in which to deploy appliances in a rural fire service?
(Gloucestershire Fire & Rescue Service)

How should a fire department plan future locations in a city with increasing demand and population?
(Goodyear Fire Department)

What is the potential for an alternative delivery model for emergency response?
(West Midlands Fire Service)

How can ORH’s Dynamic Cover Tool help control room staff dynamically manage resources?
(Surrey Fire & Rescue Service)

What are the optimal station locations for a service responding to fire and medical demand?
(Tempe Fire Medical Rescue Department)

How can analysis and modelling support strategic planning in a European capital city?
(Greater Stockholm Fire Brigade)

ORH is the trading name of Operational Research in Health Limited, a company registered in England with company number 2676859.

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