HMFSI report into SFRS COP26 preparations welcomed

Publish Date:

A report by HM Fire Service Inspectorate highlights that the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service is adequately planning and preparing to help deliver a safe COP26 conference.

The report, which was published on Tuesday, October 12, concludes that SFRS preparations for the conference are 'well advanced' and that SFRS staff have 'engaged appropriately' with partner agencies to plan for the event.

It has been welcomed by Assistant Chief Officer Stuart Stevens, SFRS Director of Service Delivery.

COP26 is expected to be the largest international summit ever hosted by the UK, with over 100 heads of state being invited and potentially 25,000 delegates attending.

Overall organising of multi-agency command and control for COP26 is the responsibility of the UK Government Cabinet Office COP26 Unit.

The report outlines that SFRS representatives will be embedded within the Multi Agency Coordination Centre (MACC), hosted by Police Scotland, which will act as a standing command and control facility for safety and security provision, including incident control during the conference.

The HMFSI report also highlights that:

  • A dedicated SFRS planning team for COP26 has been in place from December 2019 which has been increased as the date of the conference approaches
  • SFRS has had previous experience of planning for and operating during major public events, such as the Commonwealth Games in 2014
  • A Training, Exercising and Readiness (TER) strategy has been developed for COP26
  • There is a Prevention and Protection Strategy for COP26 to reduce the likelihood and impact of fire, and this includes auditing 163 hotels being used to accommodate guests linked to the conference
  • SFRS is planning for adequate resources to be available to enable it to carry out its day-to-day business including Bonfire Night on November 5

ACO Stevens said: “I absolutely welcome the positive views of HM Fire Service Inspectorate in terms of our overall preparation to help support a safe COP26. I am very proud of the work of our staff. We are continuing to work alongside our partner agencies to keep communities safe, whilst maintaining our ability to respond to emergencies.”

The full report can be viewed on the Scottish Government website.

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