Fire Risk Assessment In The Workplace When was the last time you carried out a fire risk assessment in the workplace?
There is no law that states how often you should carry out a fire risk assessment in the workplace. However, it does state that you must review your fire risk assessments regularly to ensure they’re up to date. It’s your legal duty to take all reasonable steps practical to maintain high levels of fire safety in your business. Consequently, fire risk assessments are a perfect way of achieving this.
When Should You Review Your Fire Risk Assessment?
You must review your fire risk assessment if:
there’s reason to think it’s no longer valid there has been significant changes since the assessment was carried out
It’s also best practice to include a recommended review date on any fire risk assessment you carry out. This way, it’s easier for you to stay on top of your legal responsibilities.
Why Are Fire Risk Assessments Important?
It’s your responsibility as a business owner to ensure that everyone can escape safely should there be a fire. Your first priority is to ensure everyone leaves the building safely.
Put simply, fire risk assessments are here to help you achieve this. Fire risk assessments in the workplace provide an overview of the level of safety your company achieves should there be a fire. The risk assessment documents risks and hazards, as well as mitigating solutions to ensure the safety of everyone in your workplace. However, a risk assessment is only the start. Once completed, you need to make the relevant people aware about what is contained in your risk assessment. Quite often, they contain evacuation procedures, fire extinguisher locations and fire exits for example.
Your Responsibilities As A Business Owner
Fire safety is no laughing matter as unfortunately, the consequences can be fatal. As a business owner, it is your responsibility to:
Ensure your premises has an up to date fire risk assessment in the workplace that was completed by a competent person Review your fire risk assessments regularly Ensure an emergency plan is present and communicated to your team Undertake frequent fire drills to ensure that everyone knows their role and responsibility should a fire occur Maintain and regularly test any fire protection equipment such as fire extinguishers, alarms and any other measures Induct and train all employees in fire safety when they start work Provider fire safety refresher training Nominate fire marshals and ensure they have appropriate training How To Carry Out A Fire Risk Assessment In The Workplace
If your business is relatively small with little risk it’s possible to carry out fire risk assessments yourself. However, keep in mind that the government recommends companies use third party certified companies for their fire safety management. But, if you think you have the knowledge and capability to carry out the assessment yourself, here is what you need to do:
Step 1: Identify any hazards
You have a duty to assess the health & safety risks faced by their workers. You therefore must systematically check for physical, mental, chemical and biological hazards.
Step 2: Decide who may be harmed, and how
Identifying who is at risk starts with your employees. However you must also assess risks faced by visitors, clients and members of the public.
Step 3: Assess the risks and take action
You need to consider how likely it is that each hazard could cause harm. This will determine whether or not you need to reduce the risk level through mitigating factors. You will need to categorise your risk as either high, medium or low. It’s worth remembering that some risk will usually remain.
Step 4: Make a record of the findings
If you have five or more employees you need to record in writing your risk assessment. This record should include details of any hazards noted in the risk assessment, and action taken to reduce or eliminate risk.
Step 5: Review the risk assessment
Ensure that agreed safe working practices continue to be applied
Incorporating fire safety training into your business will help increase the effectiveness of your fire risk assessment.
Every business has unique risks and requires different levels of fire safety management. There is no one size fits all approach to fire safety management, and that’s where ELAS really excels.
We believe in going the extra step to provide the best possible service to our clients. We also believe that training should be fun – in the event of a fire, your staff are more likely to recall their training if they have enjoyed it! While other companies might use some burning petrol in a tray for their fire training, we have developed specialist fire simulation equipment which can simulate Class A (paper, wood etc.), Class B (burning liquids) and Class C (gas) fires.
Participants on our fire training courses get to really work at putting out a fire in a meaningful way. Learning the skills needed in a safe and controlled environment provides your employees with hands on practical experience that really benefits your business.
Trust The Experts At ELAS
The government recommends that businesses use third party certified providers for their fire safety. At ELAS, we’re a
BAFE approved organisation meaning we have been audited and certificated to ensure quality and competence when it comes to fire safety. We don’t just provide you with a templated document to complete yourself. Our fire safety consultants will visit your premises and complete your fire risk assessment for your business. As well as conducting a fire risk assessment, you will also need to have a comprehensive fire safety policy that details the procedures you have put in place to reduce the risk of fire, and promote fire safety within your business. If you would like us to review or implement fire risk assessments into your business, get in touch. You can contact us on 08450 50 40 60 or you can use the contact form to the right.