The Role and Responsibility of Fire risk assessors
All those who operate, own or manage a premise have to comply with the stipulated fire safety laws contained in fire safety order which came into force in 2006 in England. This order applies actually to all buildings, structures and also places. However, it does not apply to private dwellings, flats and homes.
It is considered your responsibility to train and equip your staff with the necessary skills and techniques essential for fire safety. You have also to ensure that your building meets the set fire standards.
Effective fire safety training programs will include:
- Induction or orientation training-mainly cover general fire awareness
- Periodic or regular refresher training to accommodate new changes and acquire new skills
- Training to support responsible person fulfilling their fire safety duties.
- Training to enhance competence especially in fire risk assessment, fire extinguisher and fire warden.
Qualification of Fire Risk Assessors
Fire Risk Assessors must be highly qualified and competent with adequate experience in the field due to the risk involved. To become a good fire assessor, one must have a clear understanding of the following;
- The main causes of fire.
- All means of fire prevention.
- All principles applicable in fire safety.
- The outlay of fire protection techniques and measures.
- The behavior of fire in buildings.
- The likely behavior of people in case of fire.
Fire Risk Assessment
Fire safety order has greatly emphasized on fire prevention and fire risk reduction. According to the Order, those responsible for commercial buildings whether manager, owner, or any other person with significant control of any part of the building, are expected to take a comprehensive fire risk assessment. This is mainly to identify the risks or hazards associated with premise. This process is compulsory and risk assessment must be recorded in case of five or more employees.
The responsible person has extra duty to;
- Consider who may be exposed to risk.
- Reduce or completely eliminate the risk of fire.
- Provide all fire precautions necessary.
- Take all measures to ensure fire safety especially where flammable or explosive materials are involved.
- Come up with a plan to deal with any emergency.
- Maintain all fire precautions and safety equipment.
- Keep all records and findings of the risk assessment.
A fire risk assessment will help you in identifying the fire hazards and fire risks involved and thus guide you in taking appropriate measures.