Why You Need To Provide Fire Safety Training
The regulatory reform order (RRO) which has been in force since 2005, states that it is compulsory for company owners to comply with fire safety law. Failure to comply can lead to significant fines and imprisonment if a serious breach is discovered.
In order to be compliant with this law there is a requirement to provide fire safety training to all staff in order to ensure they understand fire risk and are aware of your fire prevention policies and evacuation procedures.
Putting aside the compliance requirement, ensuring your staff are trained can help reduce the risk of fire and demonstrate a proactive approach to risk management. In turn, this may be looked upon favourably by insurers and the emergency services.
Employer Duty of Care
The employer will at all times hold overall responsibility for providing a safe working environment and must ensure that the right type of fire alarm system is installed, regular system maintenance is carried out and suitable ongoing staff training takes place. This includes ensuring there is effective and clear signage to illustrate emergency fire escape routes.
What is a Responsible Individual(s)
As well as providing fire safety training you must also appoint a person or persons who will be responsible for fire safety. This person, or team of people if you have a large company or a multi-site operation, is called The Responsible Individual(s).
All commercial, industrial and public buildings must have an appointed Responsible Individual (RI) who will uphold fire safety procedures and policies. They will be liable if any regulations haven’t been followed or management systems have not been updated.
Fire Safety Equipment Training
It is also important to train staff how to use fire safety equipment such as fire blankets and fire extinguisher. It is pointless installing this equipment around your building if employees are not supported with training to ensure they are competent and confident using it. The correct use of this equipment can substantially reduce fire damage, whilst also providing staff with a key life skill.
In the event that a fire does occur your staff must know to how to treat fires caused by the different combustion sources as it is vital to ensure the correct fire extinguisher is used otherwise they could make the fire worse.
The type of fire extinguishers located around in your building will be selected according to the business environment with different options according to the source and cause of fire. e.g. kitchen fires involving cooking oils, electrical fires, paper fires and those involving chemicals and other inflammable liquids and gases.
As well as being able to deal with a fire when it occurs, training provides workers with knowledge that will help prevent fires in the first place as well as instruction regarding their response in the event they discover a fire.
Fire safety training is an extremely worthwhile investment. Not only will it help staff to be more aware of potential fire risks, it will help them adopt behaviours that help to minimise risk. It also equips them with the knowledge to react safely if they discover a fire such that your building can be evacuated in a prompt and safe manner.
The Responsible Individual will act as a fire warden and must:
- Ensure fire risk assessments are carried out to identify potential dangers,
- Consider who may particularly be at risk such as disabled employees,
- Reduce the risk of fire and employ precautions to deal with any remaining risk
- Ensure a plan is in place to deal with emergencies
- Ensure fire systems are tested and maintained
- Ensure a record fire alarms tests and inspections is kept .e.g update the fire inspection logbook
Fire Safety Training Courses
Most businesses begin by ensuring a fire risk assessment has been completed to ensure all risks of fire have been identified and where possible actions taken to mitigate the risk.
Having appointed a responsible individual the next step is to ensure they are fully trained and hold an accreditation such as the NEBOSH
If you would like more information on fire safety training please complete the enquiry form below.