3. Our values are Integrity, Objectivity, and Fairness
3.1. HMFSI is a body that operates within, but independently of, the Scottish Government. Inspectors have the scrutiny powers specified in section 43B of the Fire (Scotland) Act 2005. These include inquiring into the state and efficiency of the SFRS, its compliance with Best Value, and the manner in which it is carrying out its functions.
3.2. Our scrutiny principles are that our Inspection Work is proportionate, accountable and transparent. There is a complementary relationship between the Inspectorate and Audit Scotland and with other Inspectorates and agencies across the public sector to share specific expertise, or jointly examine important areas where the SFRS works in partnership, and contributes to shared outcomes. We co-ordinate our activities to reduce the burden of inspection and avoid unnecessary duplication. Through our inspection work of the SFRS we offer professional challenge, highlight positive practice and make recommendations to support improvement of the Service.
3.3. We primarily carry out three categories of inspections which are; Local Area Inspections, Thematic Inspections and other Self-identified Inspections together with additional work to give assurance to the communities of Scotland and the Scottish Parliament.
3.4. HMFSI Inspectors may, in carrying out inspections, assess whether the SFRS is complying with its duty to secure Best Value and continuous improvement.
3.5. HMFSI has the responsibility to decide on matters which are referred to HM Chief Inspector for the determination of fire safety disputes, in the event that any fire safety enforcing authority, which includes the SFRS as the major enforcing authority, considers that there has been a failure to comply with fire safety duties, but there is a difference of opinion in respect of the action required to be taken to rectify this by a duty holder.
3.6. We also have an established role in providing professional advice and guidance on the emergency response, legislation and education in relation to the Fire and Rescue Service in Scotland.