Update report on the Scottish Fire and Rescue Service’s planning and preparedness for exiting the European Union
Conclusions and key findings summary
A series of remote interviews were carried out with senior managers within the SFRS, representative bodies and partners regarding the SFRS`s preparedness for ‘exiting the EU’, this was done in conjunction with our work reporting on C-19. At the time of the inspection the SFRS was carrying out a review of its exiting the EU documentation, and there was no opportunity for the Inspectorate to review the revisions.
The uncertainties that remain in regards to any final trade deal will influence and impact on the preplanning and preparedness of the SFRS.
The review concentrated on three specific areas; Planning and Preparedness, Operational Service Delivery/Resilience and Procurement/Supply Chains. This was designed to ensure the Service is able to maintain its operational effectiveness and deliver is statutory duties during a period of uncertainty.
Her Majesty’s Fire Service Inspectorate believes there is sufficient information available to support the SFRS strategic planning assumptions and necessary mitigation that will enable the Service to deliver its statutory duties.
This evidence is summarised in the key findings below:
- We recognise there has been a significant amount of work undertaken to consider the wider implications to the SFRS as we approach an exit of the EU, should a ‘No Deal Brexit’ occur.
- This has resulted in robust planning and engagement that has involved the SG, Civil Contingency partners, key stakeholders and other agencies.
- We believe the SFRS has identified the most reasonably foreseeable and appropriate risks associated to exiting the EU, a ‘No Deal Brexit’ could have a detrimental impact on their planning assumptions.
- Experience gained in 2020, in managing C-19 has ensured plans have been reviewed, tested and lessons learnt. The SFRS has put reasonable mitigation in place to reduce the risks identified to a tolerable and manageable level.
- It is evident that extensive planning has also taken place to reduce the potential risk of essential goods and services and other supply chain issues, not being available to the SFRS.
Lead Officer, Simon Routh-Jones CBE, QFSM, HM Chief Inspector
Responsible Officer, Rick Taylor, HM Assistant Inspector