Legislation

The Fire Safety Order

Responsibilities

In order to dramatically reduce the loss of life and damage caused by fire, considerably increased demands have been placed on employers, building owners and occupiers by the introduction of The Fire Safety Order.

The Responsible Person is legally obliged to conduct a Fire Risk Assessment to identify the precautions needed to comply with the legislation and to implement and maintain a fire management plan. This assessment must consider the effect a fire will have on anyone in or around the premises, take into account the safety of fire fighters and be reviewed regularly.

The Responsible Person must provide adequate means of fire detection and fire fighting. They must ensure that emergency exits and exit routes must be kept clear at all times, and that equipment, exits and exit routes are clearly signed.

Employees and contractors must be provided with relevant information – and also have their own legal obligations. For example, all employees must be provided with suitable training on how to use the equipment and what to do in the event of fire.

All equipment must be maintained in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions and British Standards.

The Responsible Person must appoint a competent person to assist in undertaking these fire precautions. This can be a third party quality assured company such as Churchesfire.

Non-Compliance

The consequences for non-compliance with the law are serious, including substantial fines and even prison sentences.  

The only defence available to the Responsible Person in the event of prosecution is to: “prove that he took all reasonable precautions and exercised all due diligence”.
Apart from that, there is no other defence.

Using a third party quality assured company like Churchesfire is a means of demonstrating compliance with the law. Using a company that is not third party assured will not absolve you of your legal responsibilities.

The full Fire Safety Order and the various official guidance notes are available for download here. Copyright in the contents, cover, design and typographical arrangement of this publication rests with the Crown and are reproduced under open licence.