London Fire Brigade

Agenda and minutes

London Fire & Emergency Planning Authority
Thursday, 5 October 2017 2.00 pm

Venue: The Chamber, City Hall, The Queen's Walk, London, SE1 2AA. View directions

Contact: Peter Goss, Ground Floor, 169 Union Street, London, SE1 OLL; telephone: 020 8555 1200 ext 30084; e-mail:  peter.goss@london-fire.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Vice-Chair

Paragraphs 3(3) and (4) of Schedule 28 to the Greater London Authority Act 1999 (as

amended) provide that the Authority shall in each year appoint a Vice-Chair from among its

Members, as the first business transacted at the Annual Meeting. By virtue of Schedule 12,

paragraph 39 of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended) in the case of an equality of

votes in respect of the appointment of the Vice-Chair, the person presiding at the meeting

may give a second or casting vote.

Minutes:

In the absence of the Chair, the Clerk to the Authority conducted the election of the Vice-Chair of the Authority, pursuant to Schedule 28, paragraph 3 of the Greater London Authority Act 1999 (as amended).

 

Councillor Martin Whelton was nominated by Councillor Mehboob Khan; the nomination was seconded by Councillor Fiona Colley.

 

There being no other nominations, Councillor Martin Whelton was duly appointed as Vice-Chair of the Authority for the period until 31 March 2018.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

In the absence of the Chair and in accordance with Standing Order 9, the Vice-Chair then chaired the meeting.

2.

Statement of Members Appointed

Statement of persons appointed Members of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority by virtue of Schedule 28 of the Greater London Authority Act 1999.

 

Dr Fiona Twycross  - Chair                       Assembly representative

Tony Arbour, JP                                          Assembly representative

Gareth Bacon                                               Assembly representative

Rachel Blake                                                       Mayoral representative

Fiona Colley                                                 Borough representative

Leonie Cooper                                             Assembly representative

Unmesh Desai                                             Assembly representative

Andrew Dismore                                        Assembly representative

Susan Hall                                                     Borough representative

Sarah Hayward                                            Borough representative

Jack Hopkins                                                Borough representative

Mehboob Khan                                           Mayoral representative

David Kurten                                                Assembly representative

Oonagh Moulton                                        Borough representative

Caroline Russell                                           Assembly representative

Martin Whelton                                           Borough representative

Amy Whitelock Gibbs                                Borough representative

 

Minutes:

Resolved –That the appointments by the Mayor of London of the Members of the Authority be noted.

 

In addition, the Vice-Chair welcomed to the meeting Councillor Rachel Blake, who was new to the Authority, replacing Councillor Emma Dent Coad, who had stepped down from the Authority. 

 

3.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received on behalf of: the Chair, Fiona Twycross AM; Unmesh Desai AM; Councillor Sarah Hayward and Councillor Jack Hopkins.

 

Apologies had also been received from the Commissioner.

4.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 122 KB

Minutes of the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority meeting held on 22 June 2017.

Minutes:

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – that the minutes of the Authority meeting held on 22 June 2017 be signed as a correct record.

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Mehboob Khan, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

The minutes were thereupon signed by the Vice-Chair.

5.

Minutes of Appointments and Urgency Committee pdf icon PDF 81 KB

Minutes of the meeting held on 13 July 2017.

Minutes:

The motion was made by the Vice-Chair – that the minutes of the Appointments and Urgency Committee meeting held on 13 July 2017 be signed as a correct record.

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Mehboob Khan, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

The minutes were thereupon signed by the Vice-Chair.

6.

Special Announcements by the Chair and reports by the Chair or the Clerk to the Authority of any Communications

Minutes:

The Vice-Chair referred to the recent terror attack at Parsons Green where an incendiary device had been partially activated on a busy tube train. London Fire Brigade (LFB) crews helped evacuate the train and station, maintaining a hazard zone until the device could be declared safe. The Vice-Chair placed on record the Authority’s thanks to everyone involved.

 

The Vice-Chair updated Members on the work being undertaken by the Brigade in relation to high-rise premises and, in particular, matters relating to cladding. LFB fire inspecting officers had carried out inspections of 480 tower blocks over 18m in height and 40 NHS premises, which were identified with aluminium composite material (ACM) cladding in London, where they considered the general fire precautions in the buildings. Over the summer, large scale tests had been carried out on different ACM cladding assemblies used on buildings in the UK. LFB had now had confirmation of 188 premises in London which had ACM cladding that had failed the large-scale tests. The Brigade would be revisiting these premises to discuss the mitigation, risk assessments and action taken by the ‘Responsible Person’ for the buildings to minimise the risk from fire to the residents in those blocks. Whilst this had been the main focus of work by the Fire Safety Department, Members were advised that the department had supported the expert panel work, other Fire Services’ requests for expert opinion, particularly in relation to fire engineering, and the community safety teams had provided focused community and young people support activities in the areas surrounding Grenfell and the wider safety and reassurance messaging.

 

The Vice-Chair requested that the minutes record Members’ appreciation of the work undertaken by the Fire Safety Department.  

 

The Vice-Chair noted that on Tuesday 5th September 2017 at 12:41 hours, the Brigade received three calls to smoke issuing from a second floor flat in Camberwell. On arrival, there had been heavy smoke coming from the balcony area of the flat and visible flames. Two women aged 18 and 48 years of age had been rescued from the flat by a crew wearing breathing apparatus. Both had been conscious and breathing but were suffering from smoke inhalation and received treatment from Brigade crews before being removed to hospital by ambulance.

 

The Vice-Chair reported that at 13:10 hours on the 18th September 2017, the Brigade received a call to attend an incident of a man who had fallen down a lift shaft in Hammersmith. On arrival, crews observed that the building was under construction and that there were various unguarded drops to lower levels. The casualty had initially been unconscious but when he regained consciousness, extreme panic, fear and disorientation set in. The paramedic asked for assistance to try and calm the man down as there had been symptoms of major head trauma and further injury was highly likely unless he was restrained until such time that the Helicopter Emergency Medical Service (HEMS) could arrive to sedate him. Once in attendance, HEMS sedated the casualty which allowed crews to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.

7.

Disclosures of Interests and Dispensations

Clerk to the Authority – known details of membership of the GLA, other functional bodies and London Boroughs are attached as an Appendix to this Agenda.  The Appendix does not remove the need for a Member to declare at the meeting an interest (whether or not listed in the Appendix) in any relevant item on the agenda paper and to state also the nature of that interest 

Minutes:

Resolved – That the details of membership of the GLA, other functional bodies and London Boroughs, as attached as an appendix to the agenda, be noted.  No further disclosures were made.

8.

Authority - Summary List of Actions

Clerk to the  Authority   There are no actions arising from previous meetings of the Authority.

Minutes:

It was noted that there were no outstanding actions arising from previous meetings of the Authority.

9.

Reconstitution of Committees, Standing Orders. Allowances, Delegations and Related Matters - FEP 2784 pdf icon PDF 153 KB

Clerk to the Authority – Providing information for consideration by the Authority, in accordance with Standing Order 16(b) and (vii), namely the Authority’s committee structure, the allocation of seats on the committees, the membership and chairmanship of committees for the remainder of the 2017-18 municipal year, the programme of meetings for the remainder of the 2017-18 year, the Standing Orders of the Authority, and the Members’ Scheme of Allowances, the Scheme of Delegation of Functions to Officers and Financial regulations.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A document that set out the Chair’s motion and appended details of the proposed membership and Chairs and Vice-Chairs of all committees was tabled at the meeting.

 

The Vice- Chair moved the motion:

 

That the Authority –

 

(1)           Notes the appointment by the Mayor of London of the Chair and Members of the

Authority;

 

(2)           Agrees that the committee structure as tabled (and as attached at Appendix 1 to these minutes), which includes a London Plan Working Group, be adopted for the period to 31 March 2018 with the orders of reference for each body as set out in Appendix 1 to the report FEP 2784;

 

(3)          Agrees to dis-apply strict proportionality rules in the allocation of seats on committees and allocate seats as set out in the tabled document;

 

(4&5)    Appoints Members and alternate Members to seats on committees and appoints the chairs and vice-chairs of committees as set out in the tabled document (and as attached at Appendix 1 to these minutes);

 

(6)          Re-confirms the establishment of the Joint Council on the basis of the previously-approved constitution, attached at Appendix 2 to the report, allocates seats on the Joint Council Employer’s Side and appoints Authority Members to the Joint Council as set out in the tabled document (and as attached at Appendix 2 to these minutes); agrees that Labour/Conservative Group Member can be substituted by any other LFEPA Member from their respective Groups; and agrees that the Chair of the Employer’s Side be chosen from among those Members present when it is the Employer’s Side’s turn to chair Joint Council meetings;

 

(7)          Confirms the establishment of the Local Pension Board on the basis previously approved, as set out at paragraphs 20-26 of the report, appoints Authority Members to the Board as set out in the tabled document (and as attached at Appendix 2 to these minutes), noting that these appointees are unable to be Members of the Resources Committee;  and notes that, in the interests of good governance, the Board will, as previously agreed, continue to be treated as a formal body in terms of publication of papers for Board meetings and the inclusion of legal, finance, equalities and sustainable development implications within reports to the Board;

 

(8)          Agrees the provisional programme of work for the London Plan Working Group, as set out in the report FEP 2783, attached at Appendix 9 to the report;

 

(9)          Approves the programme of Authority and committee meeting dates for the period up to March 2018, as set out at Appendix 4 to the report;

 

(10)       Approves the Standing Orders for the Authority (as set out at Appendix 5 to the report) and the Scheme of Delegation of Functions to Officers, (as set out in Appendix 6 to the report);

 

(11)       Adopts the Members Allowances Scheme as set out in Appendix 7 of the report for the remainder of the 2017-18 year;

 

(12)       Notes the Financial Regulations, as set out in Appendix 8 to the report; and

 

(13)                       Agrees that the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 9.

10.

Questions from Members of the Public - FEP 2785 pdf icon PDF 71 KB

Clerk to the Authority – Presenting questions received from members of the public, to be answered by the Chair of the Authority. 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The questions from a member of the public for the meeting on 5 October 2017, submitted in accordance with Standing Order 25, is set out below together with the written answer provided in advance of the meeting, supplementary questions put at the meeting and the replies given:

 

Question 21

From Mr Peter Ulrich

 

Given that Clerkenwell Fire Station was taken off the market in April 2016 - now 18 months ago - to allow the Mayor to consider how best it can contribute to the urgent need for new housing in London, when will a decision be taken on its future?

 

Chair’s written response

The disposal of the former Clerkenwell fire station was put on hold in order to allow discussions to take place initially with both TfL and the GLA and subsequently with the GLA and the London Borough of Islington about the options for disposal that would contribute to the Mayor’s Homes for Londoners agenda as well as meet the local planning requirements.

 

The London Borough of Islington is in the process of reviewing their Local Plan for the area in which the property is located. The preliminary round of consultation in the form of the early review document closed in February 2017.  LB Islington is currently considering the representations which were made during that consultation, with the next step being for them to produce a full draft of the Local Plan. It is now anticipated that the next round of consultation will take place during the autumn of this year, and is likely to include a specific allocation for the site.

 

In the meantime, it has been agreed with officers at the GLA that specialist work will be commissioned to assess the feasibility and viability implications of including residential accommodation including affordable housing in any future conversion of the existing listed building. This will be undertaken by architects and designers who are experienced in carrying out residential conversion schemes on sensitive heritage assets in high value central London areas. A shortlist of suitable providers is being formulated between London Fire Brigade’s officers, their advisers and GLA colleagues.

 

Mr Peter Ulrich:In response to the second paragraph of your response, I have been told by the London Borough of Islington that the planning brief that they issued in November 2014 for Clerkenwell fire station won’t be changed regardless of the general planning they are doing for the area. On that basis, why would it make sense for the Authority to be waiting for the outcome of the general strategic planning for the Clerkenwell area?

 

Director of Finance and Contractual Services: The last paragraph of the answer to you set out what we are actually doing at the moment. We are not explicitly waiting for the conclusion of their work on their local plan. What we have done is gone out to tender for specialist consultants to help us decide what we might do on the site. They are due to report back at the end of October 2017.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 10.

11.

Budget Update - FEP 2773 pdf icon PDF 787 KB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – Presenting the latest medium term forecast position and the resulting budget gap for LFEPA over the next four financial years.

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report.

 

The Vice-Chair moved the motion – That the Authority notes the report.

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Rachel Blake.

 

The Authority discussed the Mayor’s representations to government regarding his concerns about the resourcing of the fire service in London and the Home Secretary’s response, as attached to the report.

 

Councillor Mehboob Khan moved and Andrew Dismore AM seconded the following amendment:

 

To add, “That the Authority supports the efforts by the Mayor and officers in lobbying for additional resources for the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority”.

 

In response to a request that the Director of Finance and Contractual Services confirm the resource implications of the Commissioner’s initial review of the specialist equipment and support LFEPA requires, post the fire at Grenfell Tower and the terrorism incidents in Spring, the Director of Finance and Contractual Services confirmed that this amounted to £5.8million of additional revenue spending.

 

Upon being put to the vote, there were 8 (eight) votes in favour of the amendment and no votes against.

 

The motion as amended was agreed by general consensus. 

 

It was therefore -

 

Resolved – That:

 

(1)              The report be noted; and

 

(2)              The Authority supports the efforts by the Mayor and officers in lobbying for additional resources for the London Fire and Emergency Planning Authority.

 

12.

Treasury Management Annual Report - FEP 2749 pdf icon PDF 98 KB

Director of Finance and Contractual Services – Reporting in accordance with financial regulations.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Director of Finance and Contractual Services.

 

The Director of Finance and Contractual Services introduced the report.

 

The Vice-Chair moved the motion – That the Authority notes the 2016/17 treasury management outturn results against the 2016/17 Treasury Management Strategy (TMS), as approved by the Authority on 17 March 2016 (FEP 2576).

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Mehboob Khan, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

13.

Statement of Assurance 2016/17 - FEP 2786 pdf icon PDF 354 KB

Head of Safety and Inclusion  – Presenting the Authority’s Statement of Assurance as required under the national framework.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Report by the Head of Safety and Inclusion.

 

The Head of Safety and Inclusion introduced the report and answered questions from a Member.

 

The Vice-Chair moved the motion – That the Authority:

 

1)             Notes the data set out in the report and in Appendix 3; and

 

2)             Approves the Statement of Assurance 2016/17.

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Mehboob Khan, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

14.

Honours, Awards and Long Service - FEP 2787 pdf icon PDF 82 KB

Head of Legal and Democratic Services – Providing an update on honours and awards and long service in connection with former and serving employees of the Authority and letters of congratulations presented to other individuals.

Minutes:

Report of the Head of Legal and Democratic Services.

 

The Vice-Chair moved the motion – That the Authority places on record its congratulations to:

 

(a)           The officers mentioned in paragraphs 3 and 4 of the report who received Assistant Commissioner’s Certificates of Commendation and Borough Commander’s Letters of Congratulations; and

 

(b)          Those officers who received the Long Service and Good Conduct Medal or Long Service Certificate (as referred to in paragraph 5 of the report).

 

The motion was seconded by Councillor Mehboob Khan, put and agreed.

 

Resolved – accordingly.

 

15.

Questions from Members (in accordance with Standing Order 20) – 5 October 2017 – FEP 2788 pdf icon PDF 147 KB

Clerk to the Authority – presenting questions received from Members to be answered by the Chair of the Authority. 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Questions from Members for the meeting on 5 October 2017, published in the order received in accordance with Standing Order 20, are set out below, together with the written answers circulated in advance of the meeting, supplementary questions out at the meeting and the replies given:

 

Question 481

From Cllr Martin Whelton (Labour Group)

Can the Commissioner update the Authority on the Total Recalls campaign and whether any response has been received from Government following recent correspondence to the Prime Minister on implementing safety recommendations following the fire in Shepherds Bush last year?

 

Commissioner’s written response:

Since we launched the Total Recalls campaign in 2016, we have taken a number of steps to raise the issue of white goods safety, focusing our campaigning on seeking improvements in the product recall system in the UK, which is underpinned by a drive to improve manufacturing standards.

 

Following the Shepherd’s Bush fire in August 2016, which was caused by a faulty Indesit tumble dryer that was subject to corrective action, a new working group was established by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS). This group published its recommendations in July 2017.

 

In August 2017, I wrote to the Prime Minister, which was jointly signed by a number of others including the Mayor of London, LFEPA Chair and Conservative lead on LFEPA, Fire Brigades Union and the National Fire Chiefs Council. The letter warned that thousands of dangerous white goods are still being used in homes across the UK and called for decisive action from Government.

 

We have since received a positive response from the Prime Minister, which explained that although a formal response to the BEIS working group’s report will be issued in the autumn, the Government also recognises the need to act swiftly and is considering the framework for a national body to support consumers on product safety. On the safety of fridges which we also raised in the letter, the response said that the Government will work with colleagues including LFB to ensure that the European standard is updated and addresses any issues.

 

We will continue to have conversations with the government and others to press for action to be taken as soon as possible.

 

 

 

Question 482

From Andrew Dismore AM (Labour Group)

There are many ‘backstreet’ garages and car repairers across the capital, often with gas cylinders that present particular hazards, especially when there is a fire as occurred recently in Watling Avenue, Burnt Oak, in a garage that was unknown to LFB. What can be done to make sure the Brigade is made aware of these premises and the risks they pose, and to ensure appropriate advice is given to business owners re fire protection, especially involving the use and storage of cylinders?

 

Commissioner’s written response:

Firefighters carry out visits to premises within their station area to familiarise themselves with any risks.  These may be as part of their statutory 7(2)d visits or by way of a visual audit.  The outcomes of these visits/audits are recorded  ...  view the full minutes text for item 15.

16.

Urgent Business

Any other items the Chair considers urgent.

Minutes:

There was no urgent business.