The Andrews Labor Government today welcomed the publication of fire services response data for the first time.
Data from both the Metropolitan Fire Brigade and the Country Fire Authority will now be published every quarter – starting today – as part of the Labor Government’s commitment to greater transparency.
This brings fire services in line with ambulance services, and is in stark contrast to the former Liberal Government who hid ambulance and fire service response times and refused to release the data.
Publication of this data was one of the recommendations of the Select Committee Inquiry into fire services reforms. The Government accepted all the substantive recommendations of the report, and will act on all concerns raised by the Inquiry.
The figures point clearly to growth areas where our fire services are struggling to keep up with demand. The data shows for the reporting period of 1 April to 30 June 2017 the MFB has met its targets including:
- Responding to 92.8 per cent of structure fires within the 7.7 minute target. The individual results for this measure ranged between 70 and 100 per cent
- MFB responded to 97 per cent of Emergency Medical Response within the 9.2 minute target.
For CFA brigades, the Customer Service Delivery Standard compliance rate is 87 per cent. Customer Service Delivery Standard is a measure of the first truck arriving on scene, regardless of brigade area.
CFA’s response time standards vary according to the type of environment they are operating in, with the latest data showing:
- CFA responded to 79 per cent of fires in significant urban areas within the standard response time of 8 minutes. The individual results for this measure ranged between 16 and 100 per cent
- CFA responded to 89 per cent of fires in all other urban areas within the standard response time of 10 minutes
- CFA responded to 100 per cent of fires in areas with predominantly natural surroundings within the standard response time of 20 minutes.
The Labor Government has asked the Inspector-General for Emergency Management to implement an independent assurance process, which will ensure the ongoing integrity of response time data. This will also include analysis of the data to inform the development of future response strategies.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Emergency Services James Merlino
“The release of this data is an important step for public accountability because community safety is our first priority. Unlike the Liberals, we believe the public have the right to know the response times of our emergency services - whether they are firefighters or paramedics."
"The figures provide further evidence that reform of our fire services is needed, as Victoria continues to grow. That's why we're doing just that, as well as giving volunteers more funding, more support and more independence.”
Reviewed 19 August 2020