What facilities managers need to know about fire safety

Among facilities management teams, there is usually a ‘responsible person’ who has been nominated to respond in the event of a fire. For those designated people, fire safety for the wider team is a huge responsibility and one that shouldn’t be taken lightly. As such, there are some key factors to be aware of when it comes to fire safety on your premises.

Legal Information

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 is a piece of documentation that governs fire safety laws in the workplace. These regulations reinforce the need to give staff sufficient knowledge of their responsibilities in relation to fire safety, evacuation procedures and fire exits, as well as hazard reporting. It is important that this information is conveyed to employees through regular fire safety training sessions to reduce any risks in the working environment.

Causes of Fire

Prevention is better than cure, especially when it comes to fires. That is why facilities management teams should be aware of the science behind how fires are caused and be able to educate their colleagues on the dangers. The easiest way to understand how fires form is to examine the universal ‘fire triangle’, a diagram that shows the three elements required to start a fire: heat, fuel and oxygen. In addition, the responsible person should themselves understand what exactly is meant by these terms and how to combat a fire by taking one of these out of the equation (for instance, cold water to counteract the heat element).

Types of Fire

Though any fire is bad news, blazes are separated into different types that are determined by the materials involved in causing them. As well as understanding the causes of fire, facilities management teams should also be aware of these different types. Class A, for example, is assigned to a fire that involves the burning of solid materials such as wood, fabrics, plastic or paper. Naturally, Class A fires are quite common in war