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Decision logging.........

A means of documenting decisions made at an incident, with
reference to the rationale behind why the decisions were made.


Key decision..........

A decision or course of actions which either amends or changes
current operational procedure, or which has an actual or potential
significant impact on another organisation, person or location.


When considering decision logging, a clear distinction should be made between:.......

(a) decisions to carry out an action that does not create any additional risk to operational
personnel and which does not amend or change any current operational procedures, but
which has a significant impact on members of the public or other services (e.g., the long term
closure of a road or railway, or the evacuation of nearby properties); and,

(b) decisions that lead to actions not covered by operational procedure in circumstances where
compliance with all aspects of the policy are not appropriate due to the prevailing
circumstances at an incident. These decisions may require additional safety measures to be
put in place in order to reduce the risk to operational personnel to an acceptable level (e.g.,
establishing a bridgehead one floor below the fire because the building layout and design,
and prevailing conditions make this a safe option, and where the location of dry rising main
outlets, and/or the long travel distance to the fire would cause delay, if the bridgehead were
located two floors below the fire ).


While both types of decision will require a decision log to be completed, the type of information
that is recorded will be slightly different..........

If a decision relates to an action that does not add any additional risk to personnel, and it meets
the requirements within the relevant operational procedure, then a simple written log can be created.

This log should include:
• The name of the person who is making the decision. (Note - this will not necessarily be the
same as the loggist.)
• A decision number (in case there is more than one decision that requires logging at the
• The time that the log entry is made.
• The time that the action was, or is intended to be, carried out.
• The location on the incident ground to which the decision refers (e.g., sector 1; A40 westbound).
• A description of the action required (what is it that must be done).
• The rationale underpinning the decision (why must this action be taken or, if the decision is
not to act, why action is not being taken).
• What is the anticipated impact of carrying out the action (who will be affected and for how

Where a decision is made to carry out actions that amend or change a current operational
procedure this will need to be recorded in a key decision log (KDL) and a risk assessment of the proposed activity will need to be undertaken. The risk
assessment must show that additional hazards and the associated risks have been identified and
that appropriate control measures implemented before any action is taken.

The information that must be recorded is:
• Decision number.
• Time entered.
• Name of the person making the decision and their role at the incident.
• The location to which the decision/intended action refers.
• The proposed action.
• The rationale behind why the action needs to be taken (i.e., and explanation of why the
operational procedure is not suitable in this circumstance).
• What are the benefits of carrying out this action.
• What are the associated hazards and risks when carrying out the proposed action.
• What additional control measures will be implemented to minimise the risk to people.
• An overall risk ranking of the planned activity (this will be achieved through completion of a
risk ranking matrix).
• Confirmation that the IC has been informed (if they did not make the decision) and that the
actions are agreed.


If a CU is in attendance at the incident when a decision needs to be logged, what 2 types of facilities does the CU have to log a decision?

Two types of logging exists within CSS; the simple “decision log” for instances where policy is not amended or additional safety measures are not needed, and the KDL which will require a risk assessment to be carried out.


When a CU is not in attendance then all decisions that need to be logged are recorded where?

Should be recorded on the KDL form (F6182). A pad of these forms should be kept on all pumping appliances.


Incident related records are kept at stations for a period of?

3 years, after which time they should
be sent to the brigade’s record centre at HQ for storage.