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Fire Risk Assessment

A formal fire risk assessment is needed for all non-domestic premises

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order (RRO) 2005 came into effect on 1 April 2006. It applies across England and Wales and affects all non-domestic premises and certain activities taking place outdoors. For those responsible for properties in Scotland the following legislation is to be followed; The Fire Safety (Scotland) Regulations 2006 and in Northern Ireland; The Fire Safety Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010.

These changes rationalised and consolidated the previous items of workplace Fire Legislation, and as a result of the changes Fire Certificates are no longer issued by Fire and Rescue Authorities. However, in most cases, they will still continue to inspect premises and enforce the RRO, this can be done by verbal and written advice, or by the issuing of alteration, enforcement and prohibition notices. Failure to comply with a notice may constitute a Criminal Offence which could culminate in fines and/or a prison sentence.

The RRO requires that the responsible person must make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to which relevant persons are exposed for the purpose of identifying the general fire precautions he needs to take to comply with the requirements and prohibitions imposed on him by or under the Order.

WestFour have been undertaking Fire Risk Assessments in line with the requirements of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 since the regulations came into force. Our unique compliant risk assessment format is simple to follow and is robust enough to withstand challenges from the authorities. It is based upon the exact requirements of the Order, by identifying the General Fire Precautions the responsible person needs to take to comply with requirements and prohibitions imposed upon him by or under the Order. This takes the form of an Action Plan to remedy any issues together with the ongoing Maintenance, Servicing and Inspections required by the Order for compliance.

The Harm categories that we use in the H&S and Fire reports are based upon the same ones used by the Courts in the Sentencing Guide which came into force in February 2016. This allows the responsible person to gauge the seriousness of the risks posed and the report identifies the measures needed to be taken to minimise their liability.

The objective of the risk assessment is to assist responsible persons for the property in complying with their statutory duties in respect of their properties under the: Health & Safety at Work etc Act 1974; Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations 1999; Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005;

The responsible person is identified as; the employer, the occupier or the owner as far as their control extends. In premises which are not workplaces, the landlord or managing agent is likely to be the responsible person. Occupants must cooperate with the responsible person.

In general, the Fire Safety Order applies to all areas of premises except those areas occupied as private domestic dwellings i.e. areas used in common by the occupants of more than one dwelling. (Where there are areas used in common by the occupants of more than one such dwelling, the Fire Safety Order applies.)

Within the rented sector the RRO applies to the non-domestic parts of these premises, It does not apply to private domestic premises unless a prohibition order has been served in respect of the premises. If such a notice has been issued, then the RRO applies to the domestic parts of these premises (Article 6(1) (a) refers). The issuing of a Prohibition Order is extremely rare and the Fire Service are very reluctant to do this, however, they can use Article 17 of the Order relating to maintenance to attempt to persuade managing Agents to get privately owned Flat Front Doors upgraded.

The flats, from and including the front door, are domestic premises and are excluded from the RRO unless a Prohibitions Notice has been served on those premises. Fire risk inside the dwellings is covered by the Housing Act 2004; which is enforced by the Local Housing Authority.

Please contact us for further information.

£58,100

average cost of a fire in commercial premises

£8.3b

Estimated UK economic cost of Fires in 2008

75%

of businesses do not recover from a serious fire

Fire Risk Assessment Survey

West Four can assist occupiers in complying with the Regulatory Reform Order (Fire) 2006 and produce appropriate fire risk assessments and advice.

Our Fire Safety services can help you carry out a fire safety risk assessment and implement and maintain a fire management plan.

Rented Domestic Premises Fire Risk Survey

Within the rented sector the obligation is to ensure that the requirements of the RRO are complied with and for those outside the provision of social housing (Housing Associations and Local Authorities) the assessments will need to be focused upon the common parts of premises. Further special arrangements are in place for establishments such as hospitals as well as residential care premises and sleep accommodation such as hostels refuges and HMO’s.

Commercial Premises Fire Risk Survey

Anyone who has some control over premises must take reasonable steps to reduce the risk from fire and make sure people can safely escape if there is a fire. The regulations apply to all non-domestic premises. This means that owners, occupiers and employers all have responsibilities to differing levels within these requirements.