When it comes to fire risk assessments, people generally tend to overlook it. There are a few people who understand that a fire risk assessment is quite essential, and it needs to be the center of the building’s fire safety plans. As fire risk assessments are overlooked, it can result in exposure to fire risks and even the loss of many lives at a time. 

 As a responsible consultancy, we have covered a few points related to fire risk assessment. 

Read this blog to clear your queries regarding fire risk assessment. 

Here are some of the most common questions and their answers related to fire safety assessment. 

What is a fire risk assessment? 

Fire Risk Assessment, in simple words, is a systematic look at your premises and the activities carried out within it. Plus, it also includes identifying fire hazards and who may be affected by the fire. If any serious concern is found, the responsible person may need to take action to reduce the risk from fire.

Completing a fire risk assessment is a legal requirement under Article 9 of the Regulatory Reform. Additionally, it is the first step that will make your premises safe from fire risks. By conducting a fire safety assessment, you can assure yourself of preventing any unfortunate incident caused by acute fire or explosion. 

After conducting a fire risk assessment, an expert identifies potential risks and offers appropriate guidelines to follow. Controlling and managing fire risks with utmost attention and care is an essential part of building management. 

Who can conduct a fire risk assessment? 

You can consult a licensed and qualified fire safety company that can offer a particular service you are looking for. By hiring a professional, you can stay compliant with the fire safety law. 

A fire risk assessment will examine 

  • The chances of fire catching up in your area
  • The potential danger after the fire accident event 
  • Steps to reduce the risk of fire and its spreading 

If there are five occupants or more, the fire risk assessment must be in writing, no matter what size your premises are.

What is evaluated as part of a fire risk assessment?

The amount of detail included in an individual review relies on the building’s complexity. For instance, a one-compartment building, like a kiosk or small shop, is going to have a lot less that needs to be reviewed compared to a block of flats or large office blocks.

Each fire risk assessment is unique, yet all of them follows a basic guideline, which includes the assessment of – 

  • A building’s construction, layout, and use
  • The types and number of occupants, along with any potentially vulnerable occupants
  • Electrical equipment on the site having a potential source of fire or ignition 
  • Building’s history of fire loss, if any 
  • Defense against fire 
  • Smoking areas and their prevention measures 
  • Protection against fires that are resulting from lighting
  • In-built and portable heating devices that can trigger fires
  • Fire hazards introduced by outside contractors or building works
  • The structure and maintenance of escape routes
  • Storage arrangements of flammable and dangerous liquids
  • Condition of emergency lighting
  • Measures to limit fire spread 
  • Adequate means to raise the alarm in the event of a fire
  • Fire safety signs’ locations and their use
  • Installation and maintenance of other devices like sprinklers 
  • Location of fire extinguishers 

What should be the frequency of fire risk assessment?

The frequency of fire risk assessment depends on the complexity and the area of a building. Although there are no certain rules and regulations for the frequency of fire safety assessment, the government offers certain recommendations. 

Conduct a fire risk assessment – 

  1. Every 12 months following the original assessment
  2. Every five years, a new assessment should be conducted
  3. If the building’s purpose has changed 
  4. If there are any structural changes such as layout 
  5. If there has been a substantial change in the occupants 

What is the responsibility of a person who is looking after the building’s safety? 

The duty of the designated Responsible Person is to ensure that all relevant fire safety assessments are conducted and that any necessary action is taken in order to prevent fires from occurring and prevent death or injury if a fire takes place.

Additionally, it also includes- 

  • Looking after the validity of fire risk assessment while knowing all the terms and conditions.
  • Looking after and assessing the major changes that need one more assessment of fire safety. It could be anything like a renovation of a building or any other natural disaster that harms the building and its safety.
  • Small and medium-sized business owners are usually Responsible Person for their premises unless someone else from the team is nominated. 
  • While for tower blocks and blocks of flats, the responsible person is the managing agent or landlord; however, it also can be a residents’ association member as well. 
  • Nonetheless, the responsible person for blocks of flats is only responsible for common areas, like stairwells and corridors. Residences are responsible for ensuring that their own flats are safe from fire.

You can contact our expert team of fire risk assessors at Orbis Environmental and Safety for any query and support