Average response time to fires in dwellings in England unchanged from last year – but increases for fires in ‘other buildings’

Published:  08 August, 2014

UK Department for Communities and Local Government releases report: Fire Incidents Response Times: England, 2013-14.

Key points

In 2013-14, the average response time to fires in dwellings was 7.4 minutes (unchanged from 2012-13) and 8.1 minutes to fires in other buildings (18 seconds longer than in 2012-13) (See Table 1).

Average response times increased steadily from 1998-99 until 2010-11. Compared to 2003-04, response times in 2013-14 were 1.3 minutes (22%) longer for dwelling fires, and 1.7 minutes (26%) longer for fires in other buildings (See Chart 1).


Although average response times increased over recent years, the average severity of fires has been decreasing. Over the ten years from 2003-04 to 2013-14, numbers of fire non-fatal hospital casualties fell by 55%, and fire fatalities fell by 39% (See Table 2).

These decreases correspond with improvements in fire safety and prevention which have, on average, greatly outweighed effects of longer response times.

The average area of damage fell by 34% in dwellings fires from 2003-04 to 2013-14. For other building fires the average area of fire damage was 4% lower in 2013-14 than in 2009-104 (See Table 3 and Chart 2).


To download the full report, visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/341603/Fire_Incidents_Response_Times_England_2013-14.pdf

  • Operation Florian

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