South Wales Fire and Rescue Service Privacy Notice

Introduction

To deliver our services effectively, South Wales Fire and Rescue Service (SWFRS) may need to collect and process your personal data. SWFRS is committed to protecting that data and this privacy notice explains how the Service uses information about you and how we protect that information.

This notice may be updated from time to time, to reflect the changing nature of our services

Why do we need to collect personal information?

The information that we hold enables us undertake prevention, protection and emergency services to the communities that we serve. We may also use some of the information to help us to improve our services. Examples of how we collect and use personal information include:

  • Managing responses to incidents, fires and road traffic collisions
  • Fire Prevention awareness, advice and guidance
  • Fire investigation work
  • Regulatory, licensing and enforcement actions for business fire safety
  • Business fire safety advice and inspections
  • Carrying out home safety visits
  • Checking the quality and effectiveness of our services
  • Investigating any concerns or complaints about our services
  • Research and planning of new services
  • Maintaining our own records and accounts
  • To check that our service continues to meet it’s legal responsibilities
  • Supporting and managing our staff
  • CCTV on our buildings and vehicles
  • Recruitment exercises
What personal information is collected

The type of information we process about individuals will vary, depending on the type of service being provided. Examples might include:

  • Name and address
  • Age and/or date of birth
  • Contact information
  • Racial or ethnic origin
  • Health information
  • Information about personal circumstances, such as who lives at the address
  • Gender
  • Language preference
  • Nationality
  • Education and training needs
  • Employment information
  • Next of kin details

However – we will only collect what we need to in order to deliver that particular service. Some examples are provided below:

Responding to Emergencies

When we answer a 999 call, to respond to that call appropriately we need information such as:

  • The name and contact details of the caller to communicate with them;
  • The address of the incident, so that we allocate resources;
  • Information about anyone who may live, or be at the premises, such their age, gender, any language/communication issues;
  • We may also collect some basic health information about those people – for example, any mobility issues they may have, so that we can make sure we send the right resources.
Home Fire Safety

To provide specific advice about safety in your home we would may need information including:

  • Name, address and contact details
  • Age
  • Health and medical information – for example it helps us to know if anyone in the property is a smoker, whether there may be alcohol in the home and whether anyone has any medical issues that may affect their ability to leave the property in an emergency
  • Gender
  • Language
Statistical Information

As a service we process information, including personal information, about the services we provide, to generate statistics. These are used to enable us to identify areas where we can improve the services we provide and/or to enable us to develop specific advice. As well as using them for our own purposes – we are also required to provide information to agencies such as Welsh Government.

Whilst we process personal data to obtain the statistical data – the actual statistics themselves are anonymous.

Information that may help us with this include:

  • Addresses
  • Gender
  • Racial or ethnic origin
  • Religious or philosophical beliefs
  • Sexual orientation
  • Language

Where information is requested only for statistical purposes, it is optional for you to provide it (which will be explained to you at the time).

Where Do We Collect the Personal Information From?

Often, the information is provided by you – for example when you contact us by telephone, fill in one of our online forms or when we visit you at home or at your place of business.

Sometimes it may be provided by:

  • A member of your family or a care provider
  • Another public body, such the police, ambulance service, NHS or a local authority.
  • Other organisations or companies who have had permission from you to share your details with us.
How we protect your information

SWFRS are committed to ensuring that all of our information, including personal data, is held safely.

Much of our information is recorded and held on electronic/computer systems. These are protected by security measures to prevent unauthorised access. The systems that hold personal information have higher access level controls.

This is supported by having secure work areas, as well as staff training, guidance and procedures to ensure that everyone is aware of the importance of looking after sensitive and personal data.

This combination of measures helps us to ensure that your information cannot be seen, accessed by, or disclosed to, anyone who shouldn’t see it.

Legal Basis to Collect/Process Your Personal Data

In order for us to process personal data, we must have a legal basis to do so – these are defined in data protection legislation. The legal basis will differ depending on the service provided, why it is being provided and the sensitivity of the information we are collecting. The legal reasons include:

  • The processing is necessary for us to carry out our legitimate public duties, such as those defined in the Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004 or other legislation;
  • The processing is necessary for us to comply with a specific legal obligation – for example The Health & Safety at Work Act 1974 or the Environment and Safety Information Act 1988;
  • For recruitment , employment or social security reasons;
  • For the investigation, detection and prevention of crime;
  • Where the processing is necessary in the vital interest of you or any other individual(s) ;
  • Consent – where no other legal basis applies, we must ask you to collect and use your personal data.

 

Who Else Will have access to your information?

The information held by the Service may be accessed by authorised SWFRS staff who need it to undertake their role. This may be staff across a variety of departments and locations, however, as stated controls are in place to ensure staff only have access to the information relevant to their role.

We may engage the services of commercial companies to store and manage your information on our behalf, for example our IT software systems. In many cases, these companies do have the ability to access those systems and therefore may have access to any data held on those systems. However, this will only be for system maintenance and is carefully managed to minimise any risks to personal data.

There are organisations that we engage to provide services on our behalf, or that we work in conjunction with, who will access your personal data – for example we sometimes work with partners to deliver Home Safety Checks and fit smoke alarms on our behalf.

Where we work with any third party provider, they too have legal obligations to protect your information – however, SWFRS carry out a variety of checks and have agreements in place, where appropriate, to ensure that your data is given an adequate level of protection.

In order to fulfil our legal obligations, or in the interest of public safety, we may share your information with other organisations such as:

– the police or other law enforcement agencies

– the NHS or other health and welfare organisations

– the relevant local authority

– other partners such as Natural Resources Wales or utility companies

– insurance companies

– courts, including the coroner’s office

– financial organisations

– educational establishments

– legal advisors

– Welsh Government

– Auditors

 

Your rights

You have a legal right to request a copy of the information that we hold about you. Your request will be dealt with in line with Data Protection legislation.

We want to make sure that your personal information is accurate and you have the right to request we correct or remove information which you think is inaccurate.

You also have the right to ask for any personal data to be deleted – this will only where the information is inaccurate, incorrect and/or where there is no legal basis for us to retain it.

To exercise your legal rights, or if you have any queries or concerns regarding our use of personal data, please contact our data protection officer in the first instance.

Mrs Jackie Evans
Information Governance & Compliance Officer
South Wales FRS HQ, Forest View Business Park, Llantrisant, CF72 8LX.
dataprotection@southwales-fire.gov.uk
01443232213

You also have the right to raise any concerns you have with the Information Commissioner, who oversees Data Protection Legislation. Further information can be found on their website – https://ico.org.uk/concerns/ or you can contact them here:

The Information Commissioner’s Office

Wycliffe House
Water Lane
Wilmslow
Cheshire
SK9 5AF

Telephone –  0303 123 1113