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Are you up to date with new fire safety requirements?

The introduction of the Regulatory Reform (fire safety) Order 2005 introduced new legal requirements.

In House can undertake a Fire risk assessment to meet the requirements of the Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1999 Section 3 [2] and to conform to the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005.

The Regulatory Reform (fire safety) Order 2005

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 came into force on 1st October 2006.

What changed?

The Order amended or repealed other primary legislation concerning fire safety and added to legal obligations. The significant changes over old legislation were:-

  • The identification of a ‘Responsible Person’ in writing who has the legal obligation to fulfil legal requirements.
  • That person must be trained to be competent and the obligation will default to the primary duty holder if not defined.
  • Unlike old requirements, the emphasis is now on the ‘responsible person’ to make the premises safe by using ‘preventative measures’. The fire service cannot do this for the ‘responsible person’.
  • When the preventative measures have been implemented and significant fire risks remain then the ‘responsible person’ is required to implement ‘protective measures’.
  • Fire certificates do not have legal status so even if you already have a fire certificate for your business, this new order will still affect you.
  • The responsible person must nominate competent persons to implement the measures for fire fighting in the premises. The competent person must be suitably trained, they must have adequate equipment available to them and the number of competent persons must be adequate for the premises and hazards associated with them.
  • Breach of a duty imposed on an employer by or under this Order, so far as it causes damage to an employee, confers a right of action on that employee in civil proceedings.
  • The employer has to have a written fire control policy (where there are more than 5 employees)
  • The duties under the old Fire Precautions (Workplace) Regulations 1997 are extended beyond ‘workplaces’ to include the majority of premises to which people have access.
  • The Order also extends to non-employees (e.g. contractors, visitors). The employer is required to take such fire precautions as may reasonably be required in the circumstances to ensure that premises are safe.
  • You must now have a system of regular reviews.