What is a Fire Risk Assessment? | Fire Protection Services - Impact
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What is a Fire Risk Assessment?

What is a Fire Risk Assessment?

What is a Fire Risk Assessment?

Do You Need a Fire Assessment & Who Should Carry It Out?

If you’re a business owner, an employer, building manager or a landlord you are responsible for carrying our a fire risk assessment of your premises. The government considers you the ‘responsible person’ whose task it is to reduce the risk of fire, and protect the people in your care. In this article Impact Fire Protection Services answers the question ‘What is a fire risk assessment?’ and take a look at some ways to minimise the risk of fire.


What is a Fire Risk Assessment?

As a building or business owner, you’re probably used to wearing a number of different ‘hats’ at work. For the fire risk assessment, you’re required to audit your premises wearing the hat of a fire risk officer. This involves recognising the risks relating to fire and putting appropriate safety measures in place to mitigate those risks.

The fire risk assessment is a legal requirement no matter the number of people involved. However, if your business employs 5 or more people, or you have a legal enactment in force (an alcohol licence for example) you will need a written record of your fire risk assessment, and it should be reviewed regularly.

What Do Fire Risk Assessments Cover?

There are 5 steps outlined by the government, that make up the fire risk assessment:

  • Step One – Identify Fire Hazards. Inspect your premises for anything that could start a fire, for example heaters, electrical equipment, welding equipment, anything that uses naked flames. Consider the materials present that could fuel a fire – paper, varnish, polystyrene, white spirit, foam, petrol etc.
  • Step Two – Who is at Risk From Fire? No-one is exempt from risk of fire. Some people, however, are at greater risk such as temporary staff, disabled staff, visitors or elderly people. Make a list that groups people who use the building, according to the level of risk they face in the event of a fire.
  • Step Three – How Can You Reduce the Risk? Given the information that you have gathered in the first two steps, the next step is to actively reduce the risks of fire. This involves taking steps to remove fire risks where possible, and develop a plan of action to keep everyone safe in the event of a fire, including escape routes.
  • Step Four – Create a Document. If you have 5 or more employees you will need to record the fire risks, and demonstrate that you have a carefully thought through plan for staff in the event of a fire. What you write down in this document will also need to be clearly communicated to staff.
  • Step Five – Regular Reviews. A fire risk assessment is always subject to change. The best way to deal with this is by scheduling regular reviews annually. The reviews should be supplemented by changes made whenever working practices alter. New staff joining the company will need to be trained in fire safety as part of their induction.

Inspections

It is the job of the fire service to keep people safe and, in order to do this, they can schedule inspections to check compliance with the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2006. If they find that the law is not being complied with, action will be taken in response. This ranges from providing information and advice, to prosecution leading to a fine or prison.


How Can Impact Help?

The weight of responsibility that falls upon the person tasked to carry out a fire risk assessment is hefty, especially if they have no experience in this area. Appointing a professional fire safety technician to carry out the assessment on your behalf reduces the stress and provides peace of mind that your employees/tenants are not at risk.

Impact Fire Protection Services, located in Bedfordshire, can provide a suitably qualified ‘responsible person’ to carry out your fire risk assessment. All our fire safety services are carried out in accordance with the BS5839-1 2017 standard, by fully trained and accredited technicians.


If you would like to enquire about having a fire risk assessment carried out at your premises by one of our fire safety technicians call us on 01234 889038 or 07851 737116