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17068 – Reserve BRV’s and how Fire Control Mobilise to incidents

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Ref: FOI/17068


I am writing to confirm that the West Midlands Fire Service has now completed its search for the information you requested on 28th June 2017

Please find below a summary of our findings.


I would like to know the number of BRV reserves you have.




In addition to this I would also like information on how fire control mobilise.


Emergency Calls are received from a number of sources – members of the public will dial 999 and the call will then be passed to Fire Control via an Operator Call Handling Centres (BT), other agencies E.g. Police, Ambulance, other Brigades, Airports and Alarm Receiving Centres to name a few sources.

A call handling risk assessment is then carried out by the operator.  The operator will take charge of the call and question the caller to extract the relevant information in order to mobilise the most appropriate resource to manage the incident efficiently and effectively.  The operator will obtain the address of the incident and the nature of the incident.  They will request a secondary road to confirm the incident location and any additional information which may assist the resources to locate the incident and be aware of any hazards that may exist.

The nature of the incident will be passed to the operator by the caller, whether that is a member of the public or another agency, if this information is not offered, the operator will ask appropriate questions to extract this information from the caller to enable them to select the correct incident type.

Additional information passed by the caller will be added in the details of the call and will be either part of the mobilisation message or will be passed to responding resources via Mobile Data Terminal (MDT) or radio whilst en route to the incident.

Resources will be mobilised at the earliest opportunity during the call.

The mobilising system is configured with levels of response appropriate to specific incident types.  The system will automatically propose the fastest available resources from which operators will select the most appropriate resource because: –

  1. The incident type can be attended by a range of resources. E.g. BRV and/or PRL
  2. There are specific incidents which have an automatic proposal because of the type of resources e.g. aircraft, chimney – only PRL’s can attend.

The proposal of available resources is automatically presented to the operator with a response time.  This response time contributes to the operators’ decision about the most appropriate resource to mobilise.

E.g. Grass fire – If BRV is available and proposed but their response time exceeds 20 mins then they will not be mobilised.  In this scenario the nearest PRL will be mobilised.  This is confirmed in the action plan that is available for operators to view but will also be what an operator learns whilst in Training School and retains as part of their role and also due to the frequency of the occurrence of incidents of this nature.

Operators can refer to action plans which are attached to each incident type and which are automatically generated when the incident type is entered into the call collection form.  This will ensure that the correct attendance is selected from the available resources which are automatically offered in the mobilising system.

Levels of Response are also part of the operator training course, so where there are generic attendances e.g. Secondary incidents, car fires, operators will know the attendance that is required.

Flash Messages are also associated with Incident Types.  When certain incident types are entered in the mobilising system a message will appear at the top of the screen to prompt operators that a specific response is required and how this must be achieved .E.g. High Rise – Mobilise 13 riders.  Attendance must include 2 PRL’s.

Available resources are tracked by AVLS (Automatic Vehicle Location System).  This sends regular updates into the mobilising system in conjunction with status availability.

When the operator selects ‘confirm’ a mobilisation message is automatically transmitted to the appliance MDT, station printer and satellite navigation system if the appliance is at home station or guesting at another station.  When an appliance is available radio the mobilisation message is automatically transmitted to the appliance MDT and satellite navigation system and Fire Control will contact them via radio to ensure they are in receipt of the turnout.

Officers will be assigned to the incident which will actuate their pager and satellite navigation system.  For Staffordshire officers this will also actuate their mobile phones due to poor coverage in rural areas.

West Midlands Fire Service officers will contact Fire Control to confirm incident details and state whether or not they will be responding.  If responding they will be informed of the radio communication system talkgroup and asked to monitor the incident via radio.  If they are not responding but want to maintain awareness of the incident they will be asked to monitor it via the Intranet.  Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service Officers will update their satellite navigation system to show themselves mobile and monitor the radio communication system talkgroup whilst en route.

If you have any queries about this email, please contact me.  Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications. If you are unhappy with the service you have received in relation to your request and wish to make a complaint or request a review of our decision please write to The Public Relations Department, West Midlands Fire Service, 99 Vauxhall Road, Birmingham, B7 4HW

Further information concerning Freedom of Information requests can be found on the Information Commissioner website at either the following link: or at Wycliffe House, Water Lane, Wilmslow, SK9 5AF.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]