What is a Fire Safety Assessment, and Do You Need One?

A fire can have a devastating effect on your business. If you’re not prepared, property can be lost, you may have to close your business. Worse still, people can be hurt. In reality, most people don’t realise how quickly a fire can spread. It happens quickly because a typical office or retail space can be crammed with highly flammable materials. Plus, floor, wall and ceiling materials are usually synthetic and like to burn. So, taking precautions makes sense. This is what a fire safety assessment is. Essentially, it’s a walk-through process to establish the present hazards and the steps needed to minimise them. So, let’s take a look.

What is a Fire Safety Assessment?

All building, business and facility owners are legally responsible for regular fire safety checks. Therefore, each year, an Annual Fire Safety Statement must be submitted. Furthermore, it should be noted that fire safety equipment should be tested more frequently. Here are the 4 main steps for a successful fire safety assessment.

Step 1 – Identify Fire Hazards

Carefully examine your premises, look for sources of ignition, fuels and flammable materials. Next, try to identify what class of fire these hazards may cause. Doing this will help you choose the correct fire extinguishers to have at hand.

Step 2 – Identify People at Risk

As part of your fire safety assessment, consider the employees or customers that move through your premises. Next, identify the most at risk, such as the elderly or disabled. Now, think about any special procedures you may need in the event of an evacuation.

Step 3 – Minimise and Control Risks

Now you’ve listed the hazards, evaluate the possibility of a fire occurring. For example, during a fire, will all exits be clear? What hazards will prevent a safe evacuation? In addition, what tools will you need to prevent, detect and fight a fire? These may include; a fire alarm system, smoke alarms, fire extinguishers, a sprinkler system, a fire plan, appropriate signs and direction indicators.
Providing your staff with fire safety training is of paramount importance. So, every member must know how to activate the alarm. They’ll need training on how to use the correct fire extinguisher. And, they must be aware of the fire plan and evacuation procedure.

Step 4 – Record and Review your Fire Safety Assessment

Once your assessment is complete, keep a record of the hazards and hazard reduction strategies. Lastly, revisit your plan regularly to ensure it’s up-to-date with fire safety certification and regulations. You must keep your building and occupants safe.

If you need a Fire Safety Assessment or would like to talk about fire safety or fire safety equipment, why not call our friendly team at Harbour Fire & Security today?

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What is a Fire Safety Assessment, and Do You Need One

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