London Fire Brigade

London Fire Brigade in action co-ordinating big freeze response

12 January 2010

London Fire Brigade’s ‘London Local Authority Coordination Centre’ (LLACC) is supporting borough councils across the capital as they continue to deal with some of the most severe weather in living memory.

Based in Clapham, the 24-hours a day centre is activated by the Brigade’s emergency planning team when there is a need for Councils to work together, coordinate resources, share information and make strategic decisions.

During the big freeze the LLACC has carried out important work including:
• Co-ordinating mutual aid between boroughs and TfL resulting in over a thousand tonnes of grit being exchanged between boroughs.
• Daily collating of London’s grit stock levels.
• Supporting the London Ambulance Service by facilitating borough level assistance in the supply of grit to ambulance stations.
• Providing a single point of contact for a range of agencies, issuing situation reports to local and central Government and ensuring information is shared across the city.

The Brigade is currently running a consultation on its plans for the future of the fire service in the capital, including proposals to expand this vital emergency planning role.

Cllr Brian Coleman AM FRSA, Chairman of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority said: “We must make sure that London’s response to major incidents is coordinated, and this extreme weather and other incidents like it, are good examples of why we think collaborative response arrangements could be strengthened.

“The Brigade has a proven track record of effective partnership working and extensive experience of dealing with emergencies, and we want to build on this by expanding the groups which our coordination centre can formally work with. For instance, we want to be able to forge closer links with other GLA bodies like Transport for London as well as the voluntary sector and other emergency services.”

Alongside its vital work during extreme weather, the LLACC could be called into action during any emergency which affects the capital including situations from major flooding to swine flu or terrorist incidents. Following the 7/7 terror attacks on London the centre received over 3000 calls from key agencies as it ensured London’s Councils worked together and were able to access important information about the developing situation.

Notes for editors:
• For more information on London Fire Brigade’s emergency planning role see: http://www.london-fire.gov.uk/EmergencyPlanning.asp
• The LLACC is staffed by members of the Brigade’s emergency planning team as part of the Brigade’s statutory function to support partnership working across the capital where an emergency response is needed.