Annual Fire Safety Statement: What You Need to Know

Posted on: 17 June 2020

If you manage a residential building or a workplace, you have an obligation to keep everyone who lives or works in the building safe. When it comes to the risk posed by fire, it is important that your building has an up-to-date annual fire safety statement. This document is issued by a fire safety inspector if the fire prevention and escape measures in place in the building are found to meet minimum standards. This article will talk you through the different areas which will be inspected.

Fire doors

The inspection will pay particular attention to the fire doors within the building. Fire doors are designed to withstand the heat of a fire for an extended period of time before they are compromised. This buys time in which people can escape from the building. The fire door stops the spread of fire and smoke from one part of the building to another. The inspector will check that the fire doors are intact and that nothing has been attached or nailed to the doors, as this can compromise the doors' ability to withstand fire. They will also check that the door completely seals the doorway. If it does not, smoke will be able to travel from one part of the building to another. Finally, the inspector will check that the doors close when the fire alarm system is triggered and that they have not been propped open by people who live or work in the building.

Firefighting equipment

If your building contains firefighting equipment such as fire extinguishers and sprinklers, these will be inspected. When it comes to fire extinguishers, the inspector will check that you have the right types of extinguisher in different parts of the building. For example, in kitchen areas, a chemical extinguisher should be installed as these are designed to be used on oil-based cooking fires. CO2 extinguishers should be located near circuit boards and server rooms for use on electrical fires. The inspector will also check the condition of each extinguisher to make sure the body has not been compromised by damage or corrosion. If your building has smoke hoods or fire blankets, these will also be inspected.

If the inspector finds that any areas need attention, they will detail these in a report so you can take action. Once you have taken action to remedy any issues, the inspector will perform another check before issuing you with a fire safety statement.

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