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The phrase Business Continuity (BC) is relatively modern, as our working practices have become more complex, understanding what this actually means is fundamental to business, whether the business is a blue chip financial organisation or a Local Authority School. A fire is likely to have a significant financial impact on the former, with a considerable social impact on the latter. It is noted that both examples will impact socially and financially, loss of employment, loss of facilities etc.
When any Fire Risk Assessment (FRA) / safety assessment is made, it is inevitable that some actions will be required, unless of course perfection has been achieved. These actions can be extremely varied from a recommendation to place an adhesive sign on a fire door, to the installation of a new fire alarm system, for example.
The terms Fire Prevention and Fire Risk Assessment (FRA) are not always used synonymously, however, by their very nature, they should be. Fire prevention is the generic term given to any measure(s) which serve to avert a fire from occurring, or those means by which fire is detected, or limit its progress. Whilst strictly speaking, systems such as fire alarm / sprinkler systems do not prevent fires, they do help to prevent the spread / consequences of fire and as such are embraced into this global term.
Whilst the majority of us are aware that fire safety is a legal requirement, many do not consider what that actually means in reality. The literal translation is relatively obvious, failure to meet with the legal requirements means you are breaking the law! However, who is breaking the law and what are the implications.
When we consider fire safety, we commonly reflect on physical precautions, such as fire doors, fire extinguishers and escape signage, but all of these can be complimented by fire safety training. In fact, the adoption of fire safety training should reduce the risk of fire through several means, for example, fire ignition and fire spread.
With the increasing access provided for disabled occupants, greater reliance is placed on evacuation. The Disability Discrimination Act (2005) (DDA) places requirements on building owners to provide access to buildings but all too commonly their safe escape in the event of a fire has not been given the same level of consideration.
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (FSO) came into force on the 1st October 2006 and the response by the enforcing authorities was swift and immediate in responding to their own prioritisation of risk occupancies.
Fire safety management plays a significant role when achieving life safety requirements within a building. There are however, a number of issues that can make management more difficult. One such factor is when a fire risk assessment is undertaken in a specific area or building that is not solely occupied i.e Multiple Occupancy Buildings.
An emergency evacuation procedure is part of a fire safety management system (FSMS) comprising of various policies and procedures assisting in the development of fire safety management and identifying fire risks within a facility.
This bulletin outlines the management and control measures that should be put in place to control contractors within your premise. It outlines typical procedural requirements for managing and controlling contractors and offers guidance on hot work systems.