Will the TA/Regs be providing security at the 2012 Olympics?

Sig_Mercury

Swinger
Hi All,

I've noticed that there has been some talk on the media regarding security at the 2012 Olympics. Obviously there are any number of groups out there who would like nothing more then to get some serious media coverage by attacking such a major event so to me some level of deployment is unavoidable.

Does anyone know if anything has been decided (or is still in discussion) regarding possible TA or Regs. deployment for the event(s)? My understanding is that as it's home turf security is the responsibility of the TA, could this be any different considering the possible threat level?

Any and all comments welcome!
 

jim30

LE
Bottom line - no front line role. MOD has been very forward leaning in stating that armed forces will not be used in this way.

We changed our doctrine a few years ago, and nowadays beyond some highly specialist areas such as CT and so on, we do not routinely support the civil authorities. Things like FRESCO will not happen again and the emergency services know it (they were told we are no longer their 999 service). The only exception is things like major scale flooding where an imminent threat to life is out there, or when the civil power can no longer cope. In the latter instance we help out, but send an extremely large bill for our services to the local authority. That usually stops further such requests!
 
So if the forces do not provide cover for fire strikes who will?
 

jim30

LE
Other fire services.

We're not fire fighters, and it would be wrong to use HM Forces to do a job for which we're not trained or equipped. Doing this means not supporting Ops. Fire services, and all other local authorities have had it made clear to them that we are not there to bail them out of non life-threatening situations in future.
 

Ord_Sgt

RIP
RIP
jim30 said:
Other fire services.

We're not fire fighters, and it would be wrong to use HM Forces to do a job for which we're not trained or equipped. Doing this means not supporting Ops. Fire services, and all other local authorities have had it made clear to them that we are not there to bail them out of non life-threatening situations in future.

Whats this we you speak of? I thought you were a civvy. :roll: And where are these other Fire Services, do we have several different ones now, and maybe back up ambulances too?

You may work at the MoD but demonstrate a distinct inability to understand the real world, which is symptomatic of civil servants at times.
 

jim30

LE
Ord - am serving reservist, over the last decade have been stood up several times for MACP ops.

The problem MOD has is that we don't have the resources to bail out the local authority each time their staff go on strike. CCA 04 revisited this in the light of the various responses we'd had to do. Previously local authorities had relied on MOD and not bothered to think about their own responsibilities for an emergency. We were seen as the 999 responder for the 999 services - got a problem, call the army even though they aren't trained or equipped to deal with the problem.

The reason we don't help anymore is simple - local authorities have been told to put their house in order and plan with neighbouring authorities. We haven't the people or resources to help out each time the local fire station goes on strike.

The plans were drawn up by the Cabinet Office and approved with the support of all Govt departments and local authorities. Its taken some time, but we've finally got there - we're now only going to help in worst case scenarios and not worry about other problems.
 

Ord_Sgt

RIP
RIP
The problem with your thinking is it fails to stand up to reality, when there is no one left the Army steps in, whether they are trained or not. We're not talking about the local fire station going on strike, but major emergencies when the civil authorities cannot cope, Foot and Mouth, Fire strike, floods etc... They are the responder of last resort and will continue to be so despite doctrine.
 

jim30

LE
Ord - having spent a long time working in this area with the civil authorities, they are completely on message. They know we aren't available anymore and their contingency plans reflect this.

As for the 'last resort' - we've always been available as a very last resort, but the chances of getting us means its got to be a gloucester flooding scenario when literally nothing else is available. We will not do future fire strikes though and the fire service knows this and have no plans for us to cover for them.

You are getting too worried here - the emergency planning community has known for years that we're not really in the MACP game anymore and have been able to cope admirably. There really is nothing to worry about here.
 
You have still not answered the question of who will stand in for the fire fighters? You claim other fire fighters, but that assumes:

a. It is not a national strike and that some are at work.

b. Non-striking firemen will be willing to cross piquet lines.

c. There will be enough of them to cover their own patch as well as fill in the gaps else where.

Part of the forces role has always been to fill in for this sort of stuff - because there is no one else.
 
jim30 said:
Ord - having spent a long time working in this area with the civil authorities, they are completely on message. They know we aren't available anymore and their contingency plans reflect this.

As for the 'last resort' - we've always been available as a very last resort, but the chances of getting us means its got to be a gloucester flooding scenario when literally nothing else is available. We will not do future fire strikes though and the fire service knows this and have no plans for us to cover for them.

You are getting too worried here - the emergency planning community has known for years that we're not really in the MACP game anymore and have been able to cope admirably. There really is nothing to worry about here.

Jim,

These plans, as with all others, won't survive first contact. The point that OS is making, correctly in my view, is that HMF will continue to play a role in MAC X, Y or Z, regardless of current HMG doctrine.
 

jim30

LE
Without wishing to sound patronising, the plans for a fire strike are the business of the
fire service and Cabinet Contingencies Secretariat. I have no idea what those plans are,
but I do know that they are not considering using the armed forces to support them. How
they manage a strike is their business.

I appreciate that people are making the point about the armed forces being a 'backstop' and
they are correct. We are still available for emergency assistance in life threatening
situations, or where the authority can't cope and all means are exhausted (such as gloucester).
The difference is that in days gone by, the authorities didnt plan for solving these problems
at a local level with other authorities. Instead their plans read "step 1, call armed forces,
Step 2, let them solve problem". What has changed is that we've deliberately stepped away
from strike breaking and supporting them, to make these authorities think about what they
should be doing in a crisis. Things are a lot more swept up now, and what this means is
a huge reduction in the number of times we're relied on to solve OGDs problems - there will
always be the chance of something major ocurring, but this is more once in a decade stuff,
rather than the regular low level assistance we used to provide.

In a nutshell we're not here to do the dirty work of OGDs until every other resort has been
tried and failed. This mechanism has been tried and tested over the last few years and it
works. More importantly OGDs/local authorities get the message and are no longer planning on us being their as their default crisis plans.
 

Ord_Sgt

RIP
RIP
So we agree then, when there is no one left and the civi authority implodes, the Military (lets be purple today :D ) steps up.

But getting back on thread, don't the hooligans lead CT, so surely would be utilised for the main threat to the Olympics? Seems obvious to me, but then I would consult the SME on CT if I was involved in the security operation. But maybe I'm missing something.
 

Rudie

LE
Everything will be fine.
Fire Fighters from other brigades won't have a problem crossing their fellow union members picket lines.............





Don't be silly.
 

jim30

LE
Ord - not going to discuss CT plans here - but broadly CT remains one of the areas that MOD provide to Govt for UK Ops.

As for firefighting - take it with the Fire Brigade not us. We have no involvement in this area.
 

Ord_Sgt

RIP
RIP
jim30 said:
Ord - not going to discuss CT plans here - but broadly CT remains one of the areas that MOD provide to Govt for UK Ops.

As for firefighting - take it with the Fire Brigade not us. We have no involvement in this area.

Fair one, I wasn't really thinking, you are quite right, not a good topic for discussion here.

As for the fire fighters bit, I think you are getting confused on what level people are talking about, most people are thinking in terms of a national level strike where there simply is no one else available to do it.
 

jim30

LE
Ord - I was talking about a national strike - its up to CCS to meet the requirement (MOD firefighters etc), but we won't see squaddies called up - the green goddesses are all gone and the new kit is too complex apparently to train people on in a hurry.

I did have an interesting talk with a senior fire brigade official recently - the majority of stations are very quiet now, and many firemen haven't done 'serious multi-engine fires' in their whole career. Fire fighting is a declining business apparently - fires just don't happen anymore in the same way due to better alarms and changes to working practise. He was quite depressed about the future of the organisation. The question is whether a national strike is as bad as we think - I don't think it would be fun, but it would not be as bad as some make out.
 
Based on 3 years experience as a Staff Officer in an HQ dealing with this kind of thing (including work on 2 FRESCOs):

TIGER-MONKEY said:
You have still not answered the question of who will stand in for the fire fighters? You claim other fire fighters, but that assumes:

a. It is not a national strike and that some are at work.

Even if it was a national strike there are firefighters at higher grades who are not unionised and would revert to front line work. Indeed retained (part-time) firefighters tended (in my experience) not to be members of the FBU.

Remember that fire & rescue services, like the police & ambulance services are pretty localised, including their kit, so non-striking firefighters can be brought in from elsewhere.


b. Non-striking firemen will be willing to cross picket lines.

They would & have done so. Again only my experience but the retained firefighters seemed particularly willing to do so

c. There will be enough of them to cover their own patch as well as fill in the gaps else where.

We know how much firefighters like overtime ;)

Part of the forces role has always been to fill in for this sort of stuff - because there is no one else.

But not any more - there aren't enough of us either!
 
Extra armed security for the 2012 Olympics will be provided by our EU compatriots, predominantly French.
Remember, you heard it here first.
 

sandy_boots

War Hero
TIGER-MONKEY said:
You have still not answered the question of who will stand in for the fire fighters? You claim other fire fighters, but that assumes:

a. It is not a national strike and that some are at work.

b. Non-striking firemen will be willing to cross piquet lines.

c. There will be enough of them to cover their own patch as well as fill in the gaps else where.

Part of the forces role has always been to fill in for this sort of stuff - because there is no one else.

We can't step up to this anymore as we're too small. The armed forces in the UK (in England in particular) are now below the critical mass required. This I think was the real driver behind CCA04
 

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