As a business owner or the owner of a commercial structure, it is crucial to make sure it is as safe as possible. This includes safeguarding the structure from the risks of fire. In addition to having a substantial negative financial impact on your company and causing serious structural damage, a workplace fire can result in serious injuries or even fatalities. A huge proportion of businesses are so severely impacted by a fire that they frequently cannot recover and must be shut down. As a result, it’s crucial to make sure your structure is secure and secured against fire hazards.
You have a legal obligation and responsibility to make sure that your premises are fire-safe regardless of the type of business you run or whether you’re an employer, landlord, or manager. A written fire risk assessment is required by law if your company employs five or more people. The importance of fire risk assessment lies in the fact that failure to do so will result in severe fines or even imprisonment.
Even if accidents can’t always be prevented, you can take all reasonable steps to prevent them from happening by identifying potential dangers and risks and dealing with them. If you are conducting the evaluation internally, you must designate a Responsible Person before it is finished and make sure everyone is aware of this. Usually, the “responsible person” is an employer or another individual in charge of the building.
What is a fire risk assessment?
A thorough fire risk assessment is a necessary first step in creating a fire safety policy for your building. It is simply a planned inspection of your property to identify any fire risks and hazards while taking into account the fire safety controls and procedures already in place. A fire risk assessment will ensure that the appropriate fire safety equipment is put in the appropriate locations to protect your employees and your building. Performing the Fire Risk Assessment requires that you:
- Find any potential fire dangers
- Determine who could be harmed and how
- Analyze the risks and take controls into account.
- Record the results and put them into practice.
- Verify that there are reasonably feasible control mechanisms in place.
- Review your risk assessment annually.
Never forget that one size does not fit all; a fire risk assessment for a shop or office will differ greatly from one for a residential, educational, or healthcare facility.
Creating a fire risk assessment and training are essential to a company’s fire safety and prevention duties. Issues like where and how a fire could start on the property, including potential fuel and ignition sources, who would be at risk and why (such as the risk of being trapped or working in an especially flammable environment, etc.), and the steps needed to eliminate or reduce the risk of fire are identified. The dangers from a fire’s outbreak on persons who are not employed by the company but could still be in danger, such as close members of the public or site visitors, must also be taken into account. As a result, the fire risk assessment is a crucial document that a qualified individual must complete.
Fire safety protocols and training
It is essential that your staff receive training and information on fire safety in the workplace in addition to doing a fire risk assessment. Employees and other pertinent parties must be informed of the importance of fire safety, and the pertinent information and dangers found in the assessment after a fire risk assessment. All employees must be included in the process, and some individuals may be suggested for responsibilities related to your fire safety measures.
A thorough fire risk assessment strategy will include specifics like who is liable for what in the event of a fire. The evacuation and assembly protocols should also be included in the plan, which should be shared with your staff, so they are completely informed of what to do in the event of a fire in your building.
Employees must receive the proper training and information as soon as they begin working for your organization. When new employees join your organization, it’s a good idea to include fire safety in their health and safety training. Following this, if any further fire safety measures are implemented after annual evaluations, all staff should be consulted and informed.