The importance of getting a fire risk assessment

20 May 2022 AGF Fire Protection

fire risk assessment

Doing regular fire risk assessments is not just about helping to prevent fire from breaking out in your business premises. Fire risk assessments will obviously help keep your employees and property safe, but it will also help you save your business.

It’s estimated that, following a disaster such as a fire, 25% of businesses close down immediately. Of the companies that don’t recover within a month, 80% are likely to go out of business. Even businesses with good insurance policies. It’s not just about replacing items that have been destroyed – if you can’t trade because you no longer have products to sell or can’t access the resources you need to provide services, you have no income. Therefore, make sure your insurance policy includes business continuity.

What is a fire risk assessment?

If you are the person responsible for fire safety in your business, government guidance states that you must “identify what you need to do to prevent fire and keep people safe”. You need to make sure you have the correct safety equipment placed in the best places to protect your employees and your premises. You need to identify fire hazards and the people who will be at risk, then remove or reduce fire risks, prepare an emergency plan and provide training, and keep accurate records. Another vital element of your role as a responsible person is to undertake regular fire risk assessments. If you are doing your own fire risk assessment, there is a 5-step checklist available for download on the website.

Your fire risk assessment must take a number of factors into account including emergency routes and exits, as well as the removal and safe storage of dangerous substances. The assessment must also include a fire evacuation plan that takes into consideration the needs of vulnerable people such as young children, the elderly, and people with disabilities. You also need to carry out employee safety training and provide clear information. Vitally, you must also consider how you will communicate with others in the event of a fire.

You need to review your fire risk assessment every year.

Why outsource your fire risk assessment?

As long as you understand what you’re doing, you can carry out your own fire risk assessment and formulate your own fire safety policy. However, it’s important to know that, if your strategy, or the implementation of it, is found to be inadequate, you could face prosecution. Repeat offenders have been fined thousands of pounds and some have even been sentenced to prison, although these instances are thankfully rare. But with so much at stake, it’s unsurprising that many business owners, directors and facilities managers choose to outsource fire risk assessment as well as other aspects of fire safety training to a specialist company such as AGF.

Why outsource your fire risk assessment to AGF Fire Protection?

We have been providing comprehensive fire safety services to businesses for more than 20 years. All our fire safety consultants have worked as professional firefighters, and all receive comprehensive training in the theory and practice of fire-related health and safety. Our primary concern is to help you monitor your business’s fire safety policies and procedures to keep your staff and your business safe. Contact us to find out more.

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