Improvement Overview

Sabrina Cohen-Hatton


Dr Sabrina Cohen-Hatton is the Chief Fire Officer at West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service.

She joined South Wales Fire and Rescue Service in 2001 and held numerous positions up to the role of Borough Commander before taking a secondment to the National Operational Guidance Programme at London Fire Brigade, as part of the team writing the Incident Command guidance.

A secondment with the NFCC followed as the Head of the Incident Command research programme, before returning to LFB as a Deputy Assistant Commissioner in the role of Head of Development. She then served as North West Area Deputy Assistant Commissioner and Head of Operational Assurance before a secondment with His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabularies and Fire & Rescue Services as Inspection Development Lead/Chief of Staff.

Before taking up her current position as the Chief Fire Officer of West Sussex Fire & Rescue Service she served as Interim Deputy Chief Fire Officer for Surrey Fire & Rescue Service.

Sabrina has studied at the Open University, Middlesex University and then at Cardiff University, completing a PhD in Behavioural Neuroscience whilst serving as an operational fire officer. Her research into incident command in the emergency services has not only won awards but has also influenced policy at a global level.

Her operational experience includes the terror attacks at Westminster and Finsbury Park, as well as the aftermath of the Grenfell tragedy. She is the National Fire Chiefs Council International Lead officer, liaising with fire and rescue services around the world to share best practices and bring learning to the UK.

Sabrina is a Professor in the School of Psychology and an Honorary Fellow at Cardiff University, and she holds further Honorary titles in recognition of her research with the Open University, University of South Wales, Essex University, and Royal Holloway, University of London.


The work of the committee

The Improvement Committee provides professional advice and guidance on structural fire and rescue service improvement and the assurance of governance of fire and rescue services.

The Committee does this by working with governments and partners to support effective governance in FRSs and promote sector led improvement which focuses on future challenges and securing a more efficient and effective service.

The Committee also supports the continued development of national hubs to coordinate support services, such as research and development and data sharing, to improve efficiency and collaboration and NFCC’s work to develop a greater Organisational Learning capacity.



  • Business Continuity
  • Productivity and Efficiency
  • Engage and work with national inspection regimes
  • Sector Support
  • Service Implementation
  • Resources Forum