How quickly are we getting to you

We respond annually to a considerable number of diverse incidents, most of which require urgent attendance of the fire service.

We have a primary objective of saving life through rescue operations, preventing and minimising damage to property caused by fire and rendering humanitarian services to the local community.

Our target is to respond to 80% of emergencies within:

  • 10 minutes - for fire incidents where life may be at risk
  • 13 minutes - for other incidents where life may be at risk

We exceeded this target every month from April to August 2021.

Download a bar graph showing our emergency response times.

Fire safety related

  • Investigating reports of dangerous conditions, eg blocked fire escapes
  • Investigate build-ups of combustible hazards on fire escapes
  • Reports of overcrowding at entertainment venues during performance

Post fire

  • Final investigation
  • Fire Emergency Support Unit

Our reports include figures for the number of incidents attended by NFRS throughout the year and you can see which stations attended which type of incidents.

Primary fires are any fires involving property (including non-derelict vehicles) potentially casualties and potentially involves five or more fire appliances. Secondary fires include grass fires and derelict vehicle fires, and special services includes attending road traffic collisions, incidents involving hazardous substances, and so on.

We have included total attendances and distinct incidents to show the difference between the number of stations that attend an incident and the actual number of incidents.

Incident Statistics 2010 to 2017

Examples of the data include dwelling fires, vehicle fires, outdoor fires, chimney fires, false alarms and other non-fire incidents.

Fighting fires

  • Domestic buildings
  • Commercial and industrial buildings
  • High-rise buildings
  • Chimneys
  • Rural areas
  • Farms
  • Refuse
  • Public entertainment venues
  • Secure accommodation
  • Petrochemical installations
  • Involving pipelines


  • Ice/unstable ground
  • Lifts and escalators
  • Sewers
  • Silos
  • Trenches/pits
  • Collapsed structures
  • From height
  • Involving flooding and waterways
  • Of animals

Incidents involving transport systems

  • Minor road traffic accident – up to two vehicles on single carriageway
  • Major road traffic accident – more than two vehicles, accident on dual carriageway, or large goods vehicle/public service vehicle involved
  • Rail – passenger or commercial goods transportation
  • Air – commercial, passenger, light aircraft, military, marine – inland and coastal

Generic incidents involving

  • High voltage electricity
  • Acetylene and other compressed gases
  • Chemicals and other hazardous materials
  • Biological hazards
  • Confined spaces
  • Civil disturbances
  • Explosives
  • Natural occurrences – flooding, lightning strikes

Until recently the standards for how long it should take the fire and rescue service to get to an emergency were set nationally by the government.  These standards were based on work conducted in the 1930s and were mainly designed to protect large buildings in urban areas. Since then there have been big improvements in building design, building fire safety and improved fire fighting equipment and fire protection systems, which have reduced the likelihood of major fires and large scale loss of life in this type of property.  The majority of fire deaths and injuries now occur in the home.

In 2003 the government decided to withdraw these national standards and allow each fire and rescue authority to set their own to reflect local priorities and needs.  The old national standards were formally withdrawn in 2004, and have since been replaced with new standards that focus on protecting lives in homes, as well as new legal duties including dealing with road traffic accidents.  The old national standards also set much higher response standards for the centre of built-up urban areas when compared to the rest of the county; the new standards are designed to deliver a consistent emergency response across the county. Our new standards were approved by the Cabinet of the Fire Authority (Norfolk County Council) on 9 October 2006.

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