Home » Blog » How to do a Fire Risk Assessment

How to do a Fire Risk Assessment

If you are new to the fire industry or have been given the responsibility for fire safety within your organisation you are probably keen to understand how to do a fire risk assessment. This article will cover:

  1. Background to your legal responsibilities
  2. Outline of the Regulatory Reform Order (RRO)
  3. The role of the Responsible Individual(s)
  4. What a Fire Risk Assessment involves
  5. Why use a BAFE approved company for system maintenance

Before we go into detail about the actual assessment, it is important to understand the background to the legal and compliance legislation to which you must ensure your business complies, and the risks that you as a ‘Responsible Individual’ are now accountable for if something should go wrong and an investigation finds that you are liable.

BACKGROUND TO FIRE RISK ASSESSMENT

In 2006, the RRO (Regulatory Reform Order) for fire safety made it a legal responsibility for businesses to have a fire risk assessment. The order is designed to provide a minimum fire safety standard in all non-domestic premises.

The order states that in order to maintain fire safety standards a company must appoint a Responsible Individual (RI).  In circumstances whereby the company has multiple locations or departments, there may be a requirement for several RI’s but there will always be one person with overall responsibility for maintaining fire safety procedures.

What is a fire risk assessment?

A fire risk assessment is a fire prevention process that involves a competent individual carrying out a systematic evaluation of commercial premises to assess them and their surroundings for fire hazards. The assessment will take account of the risk of fire, the likelihood that a fire could break out, and the consequences in the event of a fire.

The purpose of a fire risk assessment is to identify fire risks so that an action plan can be implemented to eliminate or reduce the potential causes of fire. This thorough fire safety risk assessment should review all possible eventualities for the use of the building and associated fire risks in order to ensure that people, processes and property will be protected from the risks of fire.

The significant findings of the fire risk assessment will also determine the category of fire alarm system that is required.

The RI, or person(s) acting on their behalf, are required to carry out certain fire safety duties which include ensuring the general fire precautions are satisfactory and conducting a fire risk assessment. If more than five persons are employed it has to be a written assessment.

If you employ 5 people or more, you are required by law to have a written fire risk assessment for your business. This should be carried out by a competent person who can ensure that all legislative requirements are fulfilled.

Failure to comply with these laws could result in the prosecution of whoever is appointed to handle fire safety in your business.

At present, there are no legal guidelines as to what is meant by the term ‘competent’. One way to ensure competence is to work with a BAFE approved company to help carry out your fire safety assessment, define your policies and procedures, and ensure your equipment is regularly maintained.

BAFE is the independent, Third-Party Certification registration organisation for the fire protection industry. They are the registration body that develops schemes to support quality standards that companies like Tecserv must achieve in order to become third-party certified.

Holding BAFE approved certification therefore independently acknowledges that the company has the required competencies to provide fire protection services.

Sadly, formal accreditation is not yet a legal requirement for all companies that provide fire protection systems and advice, at Tecserv UK Ltd believe it should be.

Now that you understand the implication of your role, let’s look at:

What a Fire Risk Assessment involves:

  • Identifying any potential fire hazards including combustible materials, sources of heat, unsafe practices and potentially dangerous conditions.
  • Identifying any particular locations or individuals at risk.
  • Reducing risk. This can be achieved by removal or separation; and by putting measures in place to encourage a culture of risk prevention.
  • Evaluating the level of risk (either low, medium or high).
  • Deciding if the current systems are adequate. This includes fire detection, fire alarms, escape routes, signage and fire fighting equipment e.g. extinguishers.

Whether you are a new business looking to establish its first fire safety policies and systems, or an established business seeking a new provider, Tecserv can help with all aspects of fire prevention and risk assessment.

We can help you:

  • Develop and further improve your fire risk assessment procedures,
  • Appoint and train RI’s
  • Provide ongoing fire safety training to ensure you satisfy the RRO reform and all current legislation.

We can also provide leak detection assistance to identify weaknesses in gas lines or other utilities or water irrigation piping that will impact your fire prevention procedures.

Working with Tecserv means that your business is legally compliant at all times and has access to the support of highly trained experts who are all dedicated to delivering a quality service.

Our experienced team can be called out 24/7, 365 days a year to provide help and support with fire prevention, and to ensure a prompt response, our service network spans across the UK.

We have helped facilities managers and responsible individuals from all kinds of companies stay safe.

Our clients include, commercial businesses, retailers, food manufacturing and industrial companies and public sector organisations such as schools, universities, museums and heritage buildings, hotels and hospitals….and many more…..

Tecserv has the knowledge and latest resources to provide a bespoke solution.

To get a head start with improving fire safety in your building, or if you would like help or advice with conducting Fire Risk Assessments correctly, please contact us or complete the enquiry form.

 

 

Posted on: 12 February 2018
Posted in: Advice