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Fire Services

Volume 487: debated on Wednesday 28 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to the Answer to the hon. Member for Peterborough of 17 November 2008, Official Report, column 125W, on fire services, whether (a) her Department and (b) Firebuy holds a copy of the minutes of meetings of the FireGuard Project Board. (252216)

Firebuy, the national procurement body for the English Fire and Rescue Service, undertook the procurement process for the Fireguard project at the request of 33 fire and rescue authorities, led by the Chief Fire Officers Association. As a consequence, Firebuy was represented on the board, and received minutes of its meetings produced and distributed by the Chief Fire Officers Association.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Peterborough of 4 November 2008, Official Report, column 340W, on fire services, what assessment she has made of the reasons for the level of fire and rescue authority participation in the project; and what arrangements for emergency fire cover there are in the event of a (a) local and (b) national fire service strike. (252328)

The Department has not made any assessment of the reasons for the level of fire and rescue authority participation in the Fireguard project. The Civil Contingencies Act 2004 lays down duties for specified ‘Category 1 responders’, including fire and rescue authorities, to assess, plan and advise in relation to emergencies. For a fire and rescue authority, an emergency includes a period of industrial action.

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government with reference to the answer of 16 July 2008, Official Report, column 487W, on fire services, if she will place in the Library a copy of the full research report. (252429)

The full research report cannot be disclosed as it is internal advice for the purposes of assisting the development of policy. A summary of the research has already been placed in the Library.