London Fire Brigade

Brigade triumphs at Design Week Awards

26 November 2015

Our Design Team are celebrating after winning in the best 'industrial product design' category for our new, acrylic ‘Searched’ tags, at the Design Week Awards last night.

Judges recognised the simplicity of the design in doing "one thing especially well".

The lightweight tags, which fit easily into a firefighter's pocket, are bright red and can be hung from a door handle, over the top of a door on in a key-card slot.

The design is part of improvement work to our search and rescue practices, particularly when searching large buildings such as housing blocks, hotels or offices, following the 2009 Lakanal House fire inquest.

Previously firefighters would mark each door with a yellow wax crayon, which wouldn't always display clearly on smoky or burnt surfaces, making searching buildings far more time consuming.



Group Manager for Operational Policy, Tom Goodall, said: "Our 'Searched' tags are being trialled extensively prior to their launch and early feedback from firefighters has been very positive.

"They have said the simple product design saves them vital time and will contribute to saving lives in the future."

At the end of an incident, the waterproof tags can be retrieved and re-used, making them cost effective to produce. 



The concept for the 'Searched' tag came from Brigade employee, Gary Hopkins in Operational Procedures.

Gary said: "The concept is nothing new - we have all seen the do not disturb signs in hotels.

"However, the sign had to offer flexibility so the one sign could be used on all doors and this included the credit card door entry system.

"Sometimes the smallest and simplest ideas can make the biggest differences".

The Judges added: "It absolutely fulfils its need and is clearly an extremely well-considered idea, creating a standardised method where one didn’t exist."

The awards were held at the Roundhouse in London and the Brigade beat stiff competition to win the category, which included Coca Cola and Thompson Aero Seating.