Responsible employers want to provide a safe work environment for their employees. They also want to be sure they are in compliance with all existing laws regulating safety in the workplace. Fire risk assessments are an essential tool to fire safety management systems but they must be done specifically for each business premises and the activities carried out there. Fire risk changes depending on the premises themselves and the activities carried out there so generic fire risk assessments are simply not good enough to ensure employees’ are safe while updating their knowledge of the existing legal requirements for a hazard free operation.
As an employer, you are required to understand the inherent risks you may be asking your employees to face in order to carry out their duties and then to reduce or remove those risks of accidents happening and removing or reducing the risk of people getting hurt if they do happen. You also need to have in place practical procedures designed to safeguard their welfare by increasing their awareness of risk and providing training, equipment and working practice to guard against it.
One good example is in the area of dangerous or hazardous materials. Are your employees handling hazardous materials correctly with suitable equipment? Are these dangerous materials being stored and transported properly?
If you are a business owner, assessments of risks will help you recognize and correct any potential hazards within your operation. As a result, a proper fire risk assessment can actually help to make your workplace a healthier and happier place for your employees.
Even if you only have one or two employees, you should still monitor your findings by creating a plan of action after performing your assessment so that you know what your priorities are. This will help you keep safety in the forefront while ensuring compliance with all laws regulating your business. This is even necessary if you are a single man operation. Why? Because the law understands that what you do in the performance of your duties affects the health and welfare of those around you.
What is involved in a proper fire risk assessment? First off, the assessment should recognise and identify any potential hazards in the workplace. It should also identify the individuals who are most at risk. It will evaluate all of the current safety procedures in place and double check them against all existing government regulations.
Fire risk comes down to the same ting in every business – fuel sources and ignition sources coming together but the combination of fuel sources and ignition sources in your business activities are unique to your business and so should be assessed as such for maximum benefit and for you to fully meet your duty of care.
Once the assessment has been completed it should be made available to top level management for review and implementation.
Who should you use to perform a fire risk assessment? It is best to hire a professional team that has employees who are well trained, certified and knowledgeable of the regulatory reform order in fire prevention and safety in the workplace.
When you hire a professional service provider, you are hiring a neutral third party who is able to assess your workplace environment objectively with a fresh outside perspective. On the other hand, whenever company employees are used as inspectors they frequently report what they believe their employer wants to hear. When it comes to employee safety and legal compliance, that is simply not good enough.
A good employer is eager to provide a safe workplace for all of their employees while protecting their property and complying with the regulatory reform order. As you can see, fire risk assessments are a principal way to keep your workers safe while updating your knowledge of existing workplace safety laws that generic fire risk assessments will not do sufficiently. Fire And Electrical Safety can perform tailored risk assessments unique to your business and the appropriate fire safety management required to protect your workforce and visitors.