Fire and Rescue Services (FRS) employ a number of inspectors (also known as Fire Safety Enforcement Officers) whose job is to enforce fire safety law. The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 deals with fire safety measures in England and Wales. They do this by carrying out fire safety inspections at a variety of workplaces across the country. They are not legally required to give notice of an upcoming inspection, although they may often do so.
What Will They Be Checking?
An inspection will usually consist of checking out the physical state and layout of the premises as well as looking at the management of fire safety. They may give advice, talk to employees or take photographs. They will check the condition of fire doors, assess potential fire hazards and look for possible sources of ignition – for more details on this, see the HSE toolbox.
They will also check that the number of designated fire wardens meets the legal requirement, that the correct signage is being used and that the contents of the fire box are correct. Additionally, they will check that any fire extinguishers have been tested, that emergency lighting tests have been carried out and that the relevant fire blankets are provided in areas such as kitchens.
What Might They Ask For?
Inspectors may ask to see your official policies and materials that you use to induct new employees to make them aware of the fire safety regulations and procedures on the premises. They may also ask to see a record of fire drills that have been carried out and any reports of any incidents that have occurred. They will want to see your current fire risk assessment as well as your detailed personal and general evacuation plans (PEEPS and GEEPS).
If you do not currently have a formal Gloucester fire risk assessment, specialist companies such as http://keloscape.co.uk/fire-risk-assessment/ can provide you with one for a negotiable fee.
What Might They Do If They Find a Problem?
Inspectors have the power to take action in a number of ways to deal with what they see as a breach of fire law. Depending on the seriousness of the breach, these steps range from giving informal advice right through to closing down premises and initiating a prosecution against the people responsible.