Fire risk assessments are fundamental to ensuring the safety of your employees in the workplace. They aim to identify what the responsible person must do in order to prevent a fire, therefore, keeping everyone safe from harm.
What is a fire risk assessment?
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires a responsible person (RP) to carry out fire risk assessments in any non-domestic premises. Any potential risk must be identified, including ones with the potential to start a fire, how likely that would be and the consequences should one occur.
Measures must then be taken to reduce or eliminate the risk entirely. Where there are five or more employees, a record must be kept of any findings. A fire risk assessment has four main objectives:
- Identify hazards and people most at risk.
- Determine fire safety measures and management policies, ensuring the safety of people in the building.
- Reduce the probability of a fire starting.
- Ensure occupants are alerted and are able to leave the premises quickly and safely in the event of a fire.
Is a fire risk assessment required by law?
Yes, and with few exceptions. Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, a fire risk assessment is mandatory in almost all non-domestic properties in England and Wales. There are also assessment guidelines that an RP is required to follow, dependent on the type of business, what they sell, the size of the premises and how many people occupy the building. Anything from shops and offices to theatres and stables, there are mandatory guidelines which must be adhered to.
Read about the guidelines you will need to adhere to here.
Who can carry out a fire risk assessment?
If you consider yourself competent to do so, you can carry one out yourself. If you do not have the time, appoint an RP and ensure that they’re competent to conduct a fire risk assessment.
A competent person may be regarded as someone with sufficient knowledge, training and experience to enable him/her to carry out the task properly.
You or another competent person must be able to:
- Identify fire hazards (potential causes of fire).
- Identify people who are most at risk.
- Evaluate the risks, then work to reduce or remove them.
- Record significant findings, formulate an emergency plan and provide adequate training to staff.
- Review and update the risk assessment regularly.
Alternatively, you can contact us here at Protect & Detect who can carry one out on your behalf.
Do I need professional help to carry out a fire risk assessment?
You can do the fire risk assessment yourself, ensuring you’re following the standard fire safety risk assessment guidelines. However, if you don’t have the expertise or time to conduct the assessment yourself, a professional risk assessor could be appointed to carry out the assessment for you.
Protect & Detect are on hand to offer assistance and advice with regards to your fire risk assessment. We can conduct them on your behalf, as well as provide training for a nominated RP.
What does it cover?
A fire risk assessment is designed to follow particular aspects of fire safety:
- Fire hazards.
- Fire prevention.
- Storage and handling of flammable liquids and gases.
- Means of escape.
- Emergency escape lighting.
- Fire safety signs and notices.
- Fire detection and fire alarm systems.
- Maintenance of fire extinguishers.
- Smoke control systems.
- Fire procedures.
- Training and drills.
Here at Protect & Detect, we take pride in ensuring your commercial premises are safe from fires, intruders and vandals. As well as supplying, installing and maintaining fire safety devices, we also offer to conduct thorough fire risk assessments on your behalf. For more information about our products and services, contact us today – we’re always happy to help.