Increase emergency call management capacity with additional fire control personnel

Control Measure Knowledge

As no two situations are the same, it is imperative that fire control commanders and personnel can correctly identify the resources available to them. This will allow them to take immediate action and, where possible, apply measures to increase emergency call management capacity as soon as call volumes begin to increase.

Their assessment, which may indicate the required resources, should be based on the number and type of calls being received and the predicted duration of incidents together with other ongoing operational incidents and fire control activity.

Fire control commanders should have a thorough knowledge of methods to increase call management capacity and know how to select an appropriate method. They should understand when it may be necessary to consult a fire control manager or relevant fire and rescue service manager prior to increasing capacity.

Methods to increase the number of fire control personnel may include:

  • Recalling on-duty fire control personnel from welfare breaks, training, or other activities
  • Recalling off-duty fire control personnel where available
  • Requesting assistance from other suitably trained and competent personnel

The fire control commander should be aware of the number and location of on-duty fire control personnel and how to recall them from welfare breaks or other activities. In addition, the fire control commander should be aware of the location and availability of other suitably trained and competent personnel, such as fire control personnel performing supporting day duty roles that do not form a part of the duty shift or watch.

When assessing levels of fire control activity and related workloads it is essential that the fire control commander considers the welfare of fire control personnel. This includes implementing measures that compensate for any interruptions to rest and meal breaks caused by increased workloads.

The fire control commander should consider recalling off-duty fire control personnel during sustained periods of increased activity. This may occur during a major incident, protracted periods of multiple calls and incidents or wherever it is likely that additional fire control capacity may be required. When recalling personnel, the time it will take for them to arrive should be considered. However, lack of availability or other organisational factors may mean this is not always achievable.

Where advance notice is received of extreme weather or other conditions where increased emergency call volume can be expected, the fire control commander should ensure their management teams are informed so that emergency call management capacity can be assessed and increased in advance if necessary.

Strategic Actions

Tactical Actions