Update to Fire Regulations for all businesses

Fire safety is crucial when it comes to demonstrating compliance as a small business. Ensuring that you have determined the risks posed by your activities, and that you have made arrangements to reduce or eliminate those risks are key steps to demonstrating how to ensure the safety of staff and guests alike.

Regulations brought out in 2005 – The Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order, required every business to nominate a responsible person for fire safety, to ensure a fire risk assessment was undertaken, and the significant fundings of that assessment to be recorded if there were more than 5 employees in the business.

With the advent of the Building Safety Act 2022, borne out of the lessons from the Grenfell Tower fire, certain requirements under the Fire Safety Order have been updated and came into force on 1 October 2023. Alongside these updates the government has written a new guide to help small paying-guest-accommodation providers understand their obligations.

So what are the new requirements for businesses?

The main changes relate to the records which must be collated and kept by the responsible person for fire safety in your business.

It is now a requirement to record the fire risk assessment in full, not just the significant findings, and not just if you employee more than 5 people.

It’s still OK to get a competent person to carry out the fire risk assessment on your behalf, but as responsible person you must be satisfied they are competent, and you must retain a record of their name / name of business.

The update now also requires that records are kept of your fire safety arrangements. I.e. how you demonstrate fire safety is managed in your premises, be it fire alarms, extinguishers, fire doors, evacuation plans, information for guests, etc.

If you share your business with others in the building, you must take steps to obtain the contact details of the responsible persons who share, or have duties in respect of the same premises.

In order to ensure you are kept aware of changes to legislation and can plan for maintaining future compliance, give EHS Management a call on 07764302858, or email jamie@ehsmanagement.co.uk