Twelve of England's 47 fire services are trialling a mobile fire safety system that uses handheld devices and tablet PCs to conduct safety audits. They are expected to go fully live with the system within the next six months.
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The system is designed to help fire services meet government targets for auditing and testing fire safety equipment used by private and public organisations, as part of a strategy to make the fire services more proactive in dealing with safety incidents.
Using the system, fire safety officers can download scheduled jobs such as home fire safety checks or fire safety audits to an electronic device, and complete them offline.
Officers can also send information from their handheld devices via GPRS or 3G networks to a central fire safety database.
The client application from software supplier Innogistic Software - Community Fire Risk Management Information System (CFRMIS) Mobile - integrates with a back-end application, also from Innogistic.
This system records each job, the action carried out, and details about individual premises, such as the location of smoke alarms. It uses this information to create audit reports for compliance purposes.
The system can also determine the risk level of individual premises and when they need to be re-inspected.
The 12 fire and rescue services that have placed orders for CFRMIS Mobile are Cheshire, Durham & Darlington, Greater Manchester, Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, Northumberland, Nottinghamshire, Shropshire, Tyne & Wear, and Wiltshire.
Daniel Ormsby, marketing and business development director at Innogistic Software, said the company has provided the fire services with the CFRMIS back-end application for varying lengths of time.
He said that the mobile logging system would make the services more efficient by making them far less reliant on paper-based manual processes.
"In the past, most of the fire services have done this using paper forms, which they handed to an administrator, but this was inefficient and open to error," said Ormsby.
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