When fire risk assessments are overlooked, the building is prone to unnecessarily fire risks that could lead to a severe loss. To minimize the risks of fire in the workplace, there a number of precautions that should be taken. Even if the fire breaks out, such measures and procedure also help reduce the effects.
- What Is Fire Risk Assessment? Part 1
- Importance of Fire Risk Assessment Part 2
- 5 Steps: Conducting a Fire Risk Assessment Part 3
- Best Practices and Free Sample Form Part 4
What Is Fire Risk Assessment?
Fire risk assessment is a procedural process that evaluates the fire causing elements, the chances of fire breakouts and the aftermath should the fire was to occur.
The exercise is carried out with the aim of identifying the probability of fire breaking out and the damage that it could cause to those within and away from the incidence. The following are the objectives of carrying out a fire risk assessment:
- Identification – finding hazards and factors that could ignite a fire
- Reduction – minimize those hazards to low levels as much as possible
- Evaluation – Devising ways to combat fire if it occurs for the least loss and damages.
The role of fire risk assessment should be placed upon the shoulders of an appointed individual, an employer or the owner of the premise. The responsible person should have his/her attention on the daily safety of the occupants of the premises.
Importance of Fire Risk Assessment
The importance of fire risk assessment for your business cannot be over-emphasized. It an essential process whose benefits are as follows:
Businesses operate on the platforms of law. There are rules and regulations stipulated by every nation to guide how business run and more specifically the safety conditions of the premises that are to be met. Violation of such laws would be detrimental to a business organization or individuals.
Therefore, fire risk assessment is a mandatory process as far as the business is dealing with human life. Business organizations are supposed to conduct the exercise and submit the legal documents to the relevant authorities. Failure to that, in the incidences of fire breakouts, a business organization could find itself in a critical situation. The charges may include huge fines or closure of the organization.
A Requirement for Insurance Cover
Running of businesses is coupled with various challenges. Some of them include loss of its machinery, theft or even fire incidences. The occurrence of such in a row would cripple the business to a state of non-recovery. Therefore, businesses seek insurance cover to aid them should they receive a blow from either of the incidences.
In return the insurers expect the businesses to pay for their premiums as well as taking the best measures possible to avoid such incidences. Therefore, businesses that have been insured under fire safety clauses are expected to carry out a fire risk assessment and put into place measures to curb the occurrence of fire as much as possible. Failure to this, they may fail to meet the requirement for compensation from the insurer should obvious sources have caused a fire.
Identification of Hazards
Fire doesn’t break out of anywhere. It always has causative agents. These are known as fire hazards. They are the potential elements that could lead to fire outbreaks. In order to protect the premises, the first step is identifying the hazards that your employees are exposed to.
There are diverse ignition sources that could be lying in a building and on a team of qualified fire risk assessors could spot them as well as offering precious guidelines on how to prevent them from becoming a problem. Such hazards include gas tube leakages, naked power cables, and heating elements.
Plan for an Emergency
Identification of hazards is essential. However, the step is to make changes that would reduce these hazards. Various enforcements would remove risks or eliminate them completely. For instance, training is core. Their employees should be enrolled on fire safety programs to equip them theoretically and practically on how to ensure fire safety.
It is an integral part of the fire risk assessment team to ensure that the fire safety equipment meets the standards and the emergency escape routes and plans are intact. This is because, if a fire breaks out, escaping colleagues isn’t an easy task.
How to Conduct a Fire Risk Assessment
The following are the elements that involve fire risk assessment:
Identify the Fire Hazards
This is the first thing that assessors do. They identify anything that could be a potential fire hazard. For example, a heater could ignite a paper or a textile leading to a fire.
Identify People at Risk
Every time fire breaks out, people under the roof are always at risk. It is an imperative degree of risk in which people in different rooms or operations are exposed to in case of fire. For instance, some could be handling hazardous materials or others working in secluded places that are hard to escape should fire starts.
This involves analysis of the risks identified and the people that are at risk. This should be accompanied by the best measure to reduce or remove the risks found. Some of the safety precautions include installation of fire extinguishers and fire alarms.
Record and Train
The organization should keep a record of the fire risk assessment and measures that were taken to reduce them. Having a follow up of such record helps in planning for fire emergencies and making the next fire risk assessment easier and more productive.
The fire risk assessment should be reviewed periodically as well as updating the records. Any change should be jolted down and re-training of staff to be conducted when necessary.
In order to ensure maximum protection against fire, the following practices are necessary if adopted by business organizations:
- Having well-defined escape routes
- Installation of fire extinguishers
- Having sound fire detection and warning systems
- Noticeable signs
Fire safety, especially for your employees, is key. Therefore, risk fire assessment should not only be carried out to meet legal standards but to ensure your employees are safe so that they could have great confidence with the working environment they are in.
How to start:
Step 1: Create your account and create a new applet by selecting a customizable template.
- Set the applet as “Team-wide” if you want all team members to view each other’s records.
- Alternatively, you can allow each participant to view his/her own records only and stakeholders to view all entries.
- Invite guests with limited permissions, if needed.
- Set up reminders if you want your team members to receive automatic email reminders.
- Configure who will add records by choosing the “Participants” tab.
Step 2: Users will click the “Open Submission Form” button to fill it out and submit it.
Step 3: As soon as a new record is added, participants with “View” rights will receive an email notification and can view it in real time on the Timeline screen.
- Click “Edit” to change status or other relevant attributes.
- Employees can discuss records in real time — each record has its own section for live comments.
- Add an unlimited number of attachments (documents, images, photos, videos, audio notes, files) to a record.
- Export records or share them online.
Step 4: Get instant access to historical data and files with powerful search and filtering capabilities.
Step 5: The dashboard screen allows you to save time when you want to check a high-level overview, with quick one-click retrieval of the relevant information.