Fire safety is a topic that we hear and see so much about, and for very good reason. All businesses in the UK should have a well -thought through fire strategy in place to protect themselves, their staff and their goods in the event of a fire. This can also ensure your business complies with all the relevant health and safety legislation in the UK.
Here at First Mats, we are dedicated to helping you achieve your business’s perfect fire strategy by providing all the information you need in this guide.
A fire strategy is a way in which fire safety objectives for a new, altered or existing building are defined and achieved. It is usually presented in the form of a report and defines the fire safety objectives and performance requirements for a building or business, and the methods by which these objectives will be provided to ensure the safety of occupants and property protection.
First and foremost, your business needs a fire strategy to comply with The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. This replaces most fire safety legislation in the UK with one simple order. It means that any person who has some level of control in premises must take reasonable steps to reduce the risk from fire and make sure people can safely escape if there is a fire.
The order applies to virtually all premises and covers nearly every type of building, structure and open space including:
This order places a clear emphasis on risk assessment. It means that any person who has some level of control in premises must take reasonable steps to reduce the risk from fire and make sure that everyone can safely escape if there is a fire. Other factors that the appointed responsible person within your business must ensure are:
Having a fire strategy also provides peace of mind and security to the people within your premises to ensure appropriate arrangements, such as fire procedures and the use and maintenance of fire safety measures, are firmly practised and in place in the event of a fire, and that the business can get up and running as quickly as possible after a fire.
It will also help to ensure that the risk of a fire occurring is minimised and controlled as much as possible to avoid a fire from breaking out suddenly.
Your fire strategy should include several elements to ensure the safety of your business, of which there are seven main ones to consider:
Assigning a competent person who is responsible for ensuring your business complies with current regulations and undertakes regular reviews, assessments and safety protection measures is a valuable way to improve the fire safety standards in your workplace.
According to The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, all businesses and commercial properties must determine and assign a ‘responsible person’. This person should hold the responsibility of developing a fire strategy, completing the fire safety checks in your premises such as the weekly/monthly checks, as well as looking after the day-to-day fire safety needs and equipment of the business.
As made clear from the points above, the purpose of a fire strategy report is to understand potential risks and what you need to do as a business to minimise them. This information is vital to ensure you remain efficient as a business, whilst also putting the safety of your staff first. After all, higher safety standards mean a safer work environment for all involved.
At First Mats, we pride ourselves on always putting safety first. You can find an extensive range of fire safety equipment that can help to ensure your business’ fire strategy creates optimum safety for your building and its occupants, as well as comply with the relevant regulations.
Richard O'Connor is a Director at First Mats. He has deep knowledge in areas like Manufacturing, Warehousing, Marine, and Health & Safety. Richard's insights have been featured in well-known publications such as Bloomberg Business, The Sun, and Reader's Digest. His blend of industry expertise and passion for sharing makes him a sought-after voice in his fields.