Fire safety remains a paramount concern for those responsible for the safety of others, workers and the public. The media have devoted more time and coverage to highlighting the devastating effects that fires can have, particularly in regards to the Grenfell Tower fire in June 2017.
What is Fire?
Fire is a chemical reaction which gives off light and heat.
Three elements are required for a fire to ignite, which is known as the fire triangle. These three elements are Oxygen (found in the air around us), Heat (ignition source such as a cigarette or hot surface) and Fuel (anything that can burn). If any one of these elements are removed, the fire will go out.
How are fires caused in the workplace?
The main causes of fire in the workplace fall into the following categories:
What are my legal duties in relation to fire?
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 outlines the general fire precautions that employers, landlords, occupiers and owners must follow in order to safely manage fire risk.
The overall responsibility for fire safety rests with the Responsible Person, which in most cases is the employer. However this could also be the occupier of a building or any person who has some control over part of the premises.
The duties of the responsible person include:
Fire safety is a very broad subject area and, due to the high risk nature associated with fires, should be seen as high priority in every organisation.
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