The Fire Safety Order 2005

This section is provided for our customers to assist in the interpretation and understanding of important parts the Fire Safety Order from a compliance perspective. There are 4 parts to the full order and full details of the order can be read on legislation.gov.uk. In this summary we have extracted details of those parts of the order that we encourage you to keep in mind when you are making your plans for compliance. Royal Berkshire Training is able to assist you with attaining and maintain your compliance with the order, with our range of tailored fire safety and risk assessment courses, delivered by our experienced fire service professionals.

Meaning of “responsible person”

In the Order “responsible person” means—

(a) in relation to a workplace, the employer, if the workplace is to any extent under his control;
(b) in relation to any premises not falling within paragraph (a)
(i) the person who has control of the premises (as occupier or otherwise) in connection with the carrying on by him of a trade, business or other undertaking (for profit or not); or(ii) the owner, where the person in control of the premises does not have control in connection with the carrying on by that person of a trade, business or other undertaking.

Duties under the Order

(1) Where the premises are a workplace, the responsible person must ensure that any duty imposed by articles 8 to 22 or by regulations made under article 24 is complied with in respect of those premises.

(2) Where the premises are not a workplace, the responsible person must ensure that any duty imposed by articles 8 to 22 or by regulations made under article 24 is complied with in respect of those premises, so far as the requirements relate to matters within his control.

(3) Any duty imposed by articles 8 to 22 or by regulations made under article 24 on the responsible person in respect of premises shall also be imposed on every person, other than the responsible person referred to in paragraphs (1) and (2), who has, to any extent, control of those premises so far as the requirements relate to matters within his control.

(4) Where a person has, by virtue of any contract or tenancy, an obligation of any extent in relation to—
(a) the maintenance or repair of any premises, including anything in or on premises; or(b) the safety of any premises, that person is to be treated, for the purposes of paragraph (3), as being a person who has control of the premises to the extent that his obligation so extends.

(5) Articles 8 to 22 and any regulations made under article 24 only require the taking or observance of general fire precautions in respect of relevant persons.

FIRE SAFETY DUTIES

Duty to take general fire precautions

(1) The responsible person must—
(a) take such general fire precautions as will ensure, so far as is reasonably practicable, the safety of any of his employees; and(b) in relation to relevant persons who are not his employees, take such general fire precautions as may reasonably be required in the circumstances of the case to ensure that the premises are safe.

Risk assessment

(1) The responsible person must make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to which relevant persons are exposed for the purpose of identifying the general fire precautions he needs to take to comply with the requirements and prohibitions imposed on him by or under this Order.

(2) Where a dangerous substance is or is liable to be present in or on the premises, the risk assessment must include consideration of the matters set out in Part 1 of Schedule 1.

(3) Any such assessment must be reviewed by the responsible person regularly so as to keep it up to date and particularly if—
(a) there is reason to suspect that it is no longer valid; or(b) there has been a significant change in the matters to which it relates including when the premises, special, technical and organisational measures, or organisation of the work undergo significant changes, extensions, or conversions, and where changes to an assessment are required as a result of any such review, the responsible person must make them.

(4) The responsible person must not employ a young person unless he has, in relation to risks to young persons, made or reviewed an assessment in accordance with paragraphs (1) and (5)

(5) In making or reviewing the assessment, the responsible person who employs or is to employ a young person must take particular account of the matters set out in Part 2 of Schedule 1.

(6) As soon as practicable after the assessment is made or reviewed, the responsible person must record the information prescribed by paragraph (7) where—
(a) he employs five or more employees;(b) a licence under an enactment is in force in relation to the premises; or(c) an alterations notice requiring this is in force in relation to the premises.

(7) The prescribed information is—
(a) the significant findings of the assessment, including the measures which have been or will be taken by the responsible person pursuant to this Order; and(b) any group of persons identified by the assessment as being especially at risk.

(8) No new work activity involving a dangerous substance may commence unless—
(a) the risk assessment has been made; and(b) the measures required by or under this Order have been implemented.

FIRE SAFETY ARRANGEMENTS

Emergency routes and exits

(1) Where necessary in order to safeguard the safety of relevant persons, the responsible person must ensure that routes to emergency exits from premises and the exits themselves are kept clear at all times.

(2) The following requirements must be complied with in respect of premises where necessary (whether due to the features of the premises, the activity carried on there, any hazard present or any other relevant circumstances) in order to safeguard the safety of relevant persons—
(a) emergency routes and exits must lead as directly as possible to a place of safety;(b) in the event of danger, it must be possible for persons to evacuate the premises as quickly and as safely as possible;(c) the number, distribution and dimensions of emergency routes and exits must be adequate having regard to the use, equipment and dimensions of the premises and the maximum number of persons who may be present there at any one time;(d) emergency doors must open in the direction of escape;(e) sliding or revolving doors must not be used for exits specifically intended as emergency exits;(f) emergency doors must not be so locked or fastened that they cannot be easily and immediately opened by any person who may require to use them in an emergency;(g) emergency routes and exits must be indicated by signs; and(h) emergency routes and exits requiring illumination must be provided with emergency lighting of adequate intensity in the case of failure of their normal lighting.

Training

(1) The responsible person must ensure that his employees are provided with adequate safety training—
(a) at the time when they are first employed; and(b) on their being exposed to new or increased risks because of—(i) their being transferred or given a change of responsibilities within the responsible person’s undertaking;(ii) the introduction of new work equipment into, or a change respecting work equipment already in use within, the responsible person’s undertaking;(iii) the introduction of new technology into the responsible person’s undertaking; or(iv) the introduction of a new system of work into, or a change respecting a system of work already in use within, the responsible person’s undertaking.

(2) The training referred to in paragraph (1) must—
(a) include suitable and sufficient instruction and training on the appropriate precautions and actions to be taken by the employee in order to safeguard himself and other relevant persons on the premises;(b) be repeated periodically where appropriate;(c) be adapted to take account of any new or changed risks to the safety of the employees concerned;(d) be provided in a manner appropriate to the risk identified by the risk assessment; and(e) take place during working hours.

If you would like us to assist with matters arising in your business around fire safety and your risk assessment, please take a look at our courses information on this site or contact us today and we will be pleased to help.

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