Response to Incidents at Colleges

FOI Number: 23165

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Freedom of Information

Published on 2 February 2024


Ref: FOI/23165 


I am writing to confirm that the West Midlands Fire Service has now completed its search for the information you requested further to your freedom of information request. 

Please find below a summary of our findings. 


I have an assignment that involves asking the fire service about their roles in handling fire incidents at colleges. I have prepared some questions for this purpose. 

What equipment the fire service will use in a fire college.  

How the fire service will handle a fire college and how they are helping . 


WMFS will utilise a range of firefighting equipment to resolve any incident that is deemed appropriate based on a risk assessment at the time. WMFS operate under nationally agreed Operational Policies on a wide range of potential incident types including Road Traffic Collisions, Building Fires and Water Rescue that provide a platform for decision making at an incident. WMFS have a blended fleet of vehicles allowing our Fire Control (call handlers) to mobilise the necessary resources, including both equipment and people, to incidents ensuring the safety of the West Midlands communities.  

In answer to your question, it is difficult to anticipate what equipment might be utilised without more detail however, it is likely to include: 

  • Breathing apparatus sets- Allows firefighters to operate within smoke filled environments 
  • Thermal Imaging Camera – A camera designed to identify hot spots, warm areas and seats of fire 
  • Firefighting Hose – Either firefighting hose reels or larger fighter hoses capable of delivering a greater water supply dependent of the severity of the fire 

WMFS strive to provide an ‘Outstanding’ Response to all emergency incidents and have an attendance standard of attending all Category 1 (this included buildings) within 5 minutes from the time of call which we constantly achieve. WMFS will utilise the above policies and equipment to ensure we deliver a safe, effective and assertive response at incident to protect life and property. This may involve the following activities: 

  • Conducting search and rescue operations within the incident 
  • Creating fire breaks between combustible elements within a building to limit damage 
  • Protecting areas within premises of value to assist with a return to normal business 

If you have any queries about this Freedom of Information request, please contact us. Please remember to quote the reference number above in any future communications.  

For service complaints, issues or comments regarding this request please contact 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. 

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