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Fire Safety for Facilities Management Personnel – Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 – Part 19

November 11, 2019 1:47 pm

Lawrence Webster Forrest (LWF) is a specialist fire engineering and fire risk management consultancy whose aim is to give information on best practice in fire safety for facilities management personnel through this blog series. In part 18, LWF continued to explore the requirements of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, relating to the role of Responsible Person. In part 19, we consider other persons who may be considered to have control of the premises.

The role of the Responsible Person, for the purposes of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRFSO) is one that can only be taken on by a suitably senior, qualified and informed person within the organisational structure. The responsibilities of the role in terms of fire safety and fire precautions cannot be delegated, however, this does not mean that certain tasks and duties cannot be carried out by other individuals who may be considered to have control of the premises in terms of matters which are under their control.

For example, an ‘other person having control’ might be someone who has a contract in respect of maintenance or repair of the premises, or anything in the premises. The reference might refer to the owner or managing agents of industrial or commercial premises under multiple occupation.

Imagine a shopping centre with units which are let out to different sales outlets. The owner of the building and the managing agents would be responsible for maintenance of the building itself, maintenance of a building-wide fire detection system, sprinkler systems, fire alarms and provision and maintenance of fire doors, for example. The tenants in this instance would include a ‘responsible person’ for each organisation who would be responsible for any failure in fire precautions affecting the people who use their premises.

Under the RRFSO, fire protection systems maintenance contractors can have duties of care, particularly in respect of their work maintaining existing systems. They are a ‘person who has control’ of the premises in so much as they must ensure the work they complete on the system is to a high standard and that the system is fully operational after their work is complete.

In part 20 of this series on fire safety legislation, LWF will look at the roles of competent persons, as laid out by the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. In the meantime, if you have any queries about your own facilities or wish to discuss this blog series, please contact LWF on freephone 0800 410 1130.

Lawrence Webster Forrest is a fire engineering consultancy based in Surrey with over 25 years’ experience, which provides a wide range of consultancy services to professionals involved in the design, development and construction and operation of buildings.

While care has been taken to ensure that information contained in LWF’s publications is true and correct at the time of publication, changes in circumstances after the time of publication may impact on the accuracy of this information.

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