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Fire and Rescue Service: FiReControl

Volume 697: debated on Tuesday 18 December 2007

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

What is the current estimated total cost for the delivery of the FiReControl project; how this figure compares to estimates made in (a) 2004; (b) 2005; and (c) 2006; and what are the reasons for any variance between these figures, other than annual inflation. [HL843]

The 2007 FiReControl business case estimates total costs for the delivery of the FiReControl project to be £1.4 billion over 15 years (2004-05 to 2019-20). The outline business case published in 2005 had previously estimated total costs to be £1 billion over 13 years (2004-05 to 2017-18). This variance is due to increased certainty on costs following the award of the IT contract and signing of the lease agreements, the addition of a further two years of running costs and annual inflation.

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

What is the current estimated total cost for the delivery of information technology contracts required by the FiReControl project; and how this figure relates to the earliest-made estimate. [HL844]

The current FiReControl full business case estimates the cost of procuring information technology at each regional control centre to be £11.5 million at 2006-07 prices. This compares with a figure of £9 million at 2005-06 prices in the outline business case published in 2005. The scope of the IT procurement expanded between the outline and full business case to include furniture, training, station-end equipment and implementation of an integrated risk management tool for the fire rescue and service.

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

When each of the nine regional fire control centres will become operational; what is the anticipated start date for each centre; and whether each start date differs from the earliest-made estimate for each centre. [HL845]

The forecast go-live dates for each of the nine region control centres are:

October 2009—east Midlands, north-east and south-west

January 2010—West Midlands

May 2010—south-east

September 2010—north-west

November 2010—London

January 2011—Yorkshire and Humberside

May 2011—east of England.

Estimates for the regional rollout order and earliest achievable dates for all the nine regions were first published in November 2004. When this information was published, it was made clear that it was indicative and there was a high degree of uncertainty around the dates. The rollout dates have been refined as the technology and accommodation procurements have progressed.

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

What is the present estimated capital cost required for the creation of each regional control centre; and how this figure relates to the earliest-made estimate for each centre. [HL847]

There are no capital costs required for each regional control centre because the land and buildings for the RCCs have been procured under the private developer schemes and will be leased by the local authority companies.

asked Her Majesty’s Government:

Whether they will publish a detailed list of the capital assets realised to date from the implementation of the FiReControl project. [HL848]

The FiReControl project will produce two types of capital assets: the buildings, which will be leased by the regional control centre companies, and the infrastructure, which will provide the networked call-handling and mobilising functionality. Three buildings have reached practical completion: east Midlands, north-east and south-west. We are currently working with EADS Defence & Security Systems Ltd in developing the infrastructure, and the first element—the data migration toolkit—will be completed shortly.