2. Fire risk assessments

As the ‘responsible person’ you must carry out and regularly review a fire risk assessment of the premises. This will identify what you need to do to prevent fire and keep people safe.

You must keep a written record of your fire risk assessment if your business has 5 or more people.

Carrying out the assessment

  1. Identify the fire hazards.

  2. Identify people at risk.

  3. Evaluate, remove or reduce the risks.

  4. Record your findings, prepare an emergency plan and provide training.

  5. Review and update the fire risk assessment regularly.

The fire safety risk assessment chart gives more detailed information about these steps.

You’ll need to consider:

  • emergency routes and exits
  • fire detection and warning systems
  • fire fighting equipment
  • the removal or safe storage of dangerous substances
  • an emergency fire evacuation plan
  • the needs of vulnerable people, eg the elderly, young children or those with disabilities
  • providing information to employees and other people on the premises
  • staff fire safety training

Help with the assessment

You can do the fire risk assessment yourself with the help of standard fire safety advice documents.

You’ll need to appoint a ‘competent person’ to help, eg a professional risk assessor, if you don’t have the expertise or time to do the fire risk assessment yourself.

If you’re not sure if your risk assessment has been carried out properly your local fire and rescue authority might be able to give you advice although they can’t carry out risk assessments for you.

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