Informing future partnership opportunities to reduce fire risks


Why the client needed the research
Firebrake Wales reports that a good deal of evidence exists indicating which groups of people are most at risk of suffering an accidental home fire, resulting in injury or death. These groups included people who are ‘hard to reach’, such as those who are vulnerable, marginalised, and / or resistant to adopting safer behaviours. A study of fatal Fire Investigation Reports in the UK highlighted the role of alcohol, mobility and mental illness as important influences on whether a fire starts and/or whether it has fatal consequences. Qualitative research was required to explore new ways of reaching those at risk, with a focus on people with a mental illness, and alcohol and drug misusers.

imageOur approach
Given the sensitive nature of the research, we worked closely with support organisations. We obtained the views of those providing the support as well as their clients via in-depth interviews, paired depths and triads. Interviewing required tact and strong rapport-building skills – several participants finished by saying they had welcomed the opportunity to discuss issues in confidence.

The outcome
The findings shed light on the kind of behaviours which make these groups so vulnerable to fire. They are also proving pivotal in helping Firebrake Wales open up new partnerships with those who work with these groups. In addition, the research recommendations are guiding Firebrake Wales on the development of effective interventions for these at-risk groups.

What the client said
“All elements of the project were handled really well by Beaufort Research. In particular, we were again very impressed with the high level of understanding shown by the team. Picking up the brief quickly and accurately and turning around high quality insight and results.” (Richard Hall, Policy and Research Co-ordinator)