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Posted by David Cant on October 17, 2010
Fire Risk Assessments – Why they’re needed to meet regulations and look after your employees
Fire Risk Assessments are required by The Fire Safety Order 2005 UK Fire Regulations – and for good reason too! In a nutshell, a fire risk assessment is used to determine the chance of a fire occurring in any workplace premises. This assessment can then be used to create precautions within the workplace which reduce fire risks and help prevent fires from occurring.
This has three distinct benefits:
1. Applies with essential regulations
2. Makes sure that you and your employees are working in a safe environment when it comes to the risks of fire
3. Limits the potential for fire damage to your premises
How do Fire Risk Assessments work?
- Under the UK Fire Regulations, someone must be legally-designated the “Responsible Person”. This person then as the duty and responsibility to carry out the fire risk assessments and deal with the outcome.
- This can be anyone; either you, or a member of staff, or a separate company/individual if you cannot find anyone within your business who has the knowledge and expertise to confidently carry out a reliable fire risk assessment.
- The responsible person must use a fire risk assessment form, and then analyse the entire premises for any potential hazards which carry a risk of causing a fire. Any hazards which could cause further damage or danger in the event of a fire should also be taken into account.
- Once fire hazards have been identified and noted, precautions must then be decided upon if actions are required to reduce the risk of fire harm or damage
However, it may not be simple as that, as there’s one catch:
The UK regulations state that the responsible person must make a suitable and sufficient assessment of risks. The responsible person must also comply with the requirements and prohibitions stated in the order. If you do not have someone available who has the knowledge and expertise to do this, then your fire assessment may not meet requirements, and you may break the law. As well as requiring the ability to carry out the fire assessment, the responsible person must also be able to correctly remedy any hazards which are found. This may require knowledge of fire extinguishers, emergency plans, fire-resistance and so on.
For the sake of complying with the law, protecting your staff and protecting your premises, it may be worth hiring someone who can help. With Veritas Consulting, you can hire one of our fire risk assessors to assess your premises, carry out a detailed professional assessment, and make sure that fire risks are as limited as possible.
This post has been filed in: Fire Risk Management