Kent has emerged as one of the top performing fire and rescue services in the country, following an independent inspection, which assessed emergency response, public protection, and workforce support and culture.

Following an independent inspection by Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire and Rescue Services (HMICFRS), Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) has been judged ‘good’ overall with ‘outstanding’ elements.  

Inspectors described KFRS as ‘excellent in its performance in keeping people safe and secure from fires and other risks’, and it’s again emerged as one of the top performing fire services in the country.  

During their visit in the summer last year, inspectors assessed how KFRS responds to fires and other emergencies and protects the public. They also looked at how the service supports its workforce and volunteers.  

 KFRS achieved ‘good’ in two core pillars of assessment:  

  • Effectiveness – effective emergency response and in how it protects the public.
  • People – how it looks after its workforce.

It was judged as ‘outstanding’ in the efficiency pillar:  

  • Efficiency – how the service spends public money, and uses resources and equipment. 

Not only does the report highlight the service’s ‘excellent performance in keeping people safe’, but it also says KFRS is ‘outstanding at promoting the right values and culture’, with ‘senior leaders as role models’ who ‘embody a positive vision’. Inspectors identified ‘a positive working culture throughout the service, with staff empowered and willing to challenge’.  

Ann Millington, Chief Executive
Ann Millington, Chief Executive

Ann Millington, Chief Executive of Kent Fire and Rescue Service, said: “I’m pleased and very proud that an independent body has assessed our performance in this way. Our teams have worked really hard to raise the bar and have achieved ‘outstanding’ overall for efficiency, as well as in other areas including culture and understanding risk.  

“While this is a positive report, it’s important we continue to improve and develop the services we offer to everyone. We’re always striving to do more and be even better. 

“I am thankful to have such a strong, hardworking, and impressive workforce, made up of people who genuinely care and want to do the right thing. Every one of us at KFRS is dedicated and helps to save lives.”  

Nick Chard, Chairman of Kent and Medway Fire and Rescue Authority, said: “I’m delighted that Kent Fire and Rescue Service is among the top performing fire services in the UK following its HMICFRS inspection. This comes as a result of hard work and dedication from the team across Kent and Medway, who together help save lives and deliver a fire and rescue service to be proud of.” 

His Majesty’s Inspector of Fire and Rescue Services Roy Wilsher said: “I congratulate Kent Fire and Rescue Service on its strong performance across all three areas of our assessment. The Service thoroughly understands risk and prioritises accordingly, showing some very innovative and clear planning.” 

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By Ed

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