Blake Fire and Security Systems

Fire Safety Legislation Is Biting Back - Is Your Business In The Clear?

Date: 8 December 2017
Categories:

Fire safety and building regulations are in the news now more than ever following the appalling events over the summer.

As a result, the Government are making much needed updates to the fire safety legislation - but, while you wait for the changes to be announced, what can you do to make your business safer?

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Remembering what happened on June 14 2017

The Grenfell fire started in a fridge freezer on the fourth floor of the tower block.

The small, seemingly manageable fire quickly got out of control as the flames spread through the exterior cladding. It was only a matter of minutes before the majority of the tower block was in flames...

The low cost and insufficient cladding was fitted during a £9million refurbishment project, ordered by the firm that managed the block.

Your duty to understand and act upon the fire safety legislation

Following the disaster, the Government launched an independent review of building and fire safety regulations.

And, although the findings haven't been announced to the public yet, business owners should review and improve their own fire safety equipment and processes.

Taking your first steps towards a safer business / building

The first thing you should do is review your Fire Risk Assessment - and be brutally honest. If there is ANYTHING that could be improved, make a note and take action to resolve any potential issues.

Here are a few things to consider:

  • the current state of your fire safety equipment
  • the reliability of your equipment and signage

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  • external cladding
    • is it made out of the same materials as the Grenfell cladding? (Reynolux-coated aluminium sheets over a highly flammable Reynobond polyethylene core)
  • fire doors
    • have your fire doors been serviced in the last year?
    • if not, how can you be sure they will work effectively in the case of a fire?

If you are uncertain about the answer to ANY of the above questions, your business is at risk. It is the Responsible Person's job to ensure the duty of care has been met in your workplace.

Failing to do so could result in unlimited fines for the business or, in extreme cases, a prison sentence!

Know when to get the professionals involved

Fire safety is more complex than it seems, and that's why accredited installers undergo continual training and inspection to ensure their installations (and your business) comply with the law.

Of course, a professional installation will be more expensive than buying the equipment online and having a go yourself or hiring a handy-man but, imagine the worst happens and your building goes up in flames...

Would you rather your staff and visitors rely on quality assured, regularly maintained equipment, or something bought online and stuck on the wall?

Accreditations, like NSI GOLD FIRE, offer the Responsible Person peace of mind that they have done everything in their power to fulfil their duty of care.

What next?
If you're the Responsible Person, you need to read our guide to balancing budget and fire safety. Click the image below.

Balancing budget and fire safety for business owners

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