Listed below are checklists to assist employers in carrying out a fire risk assessment to determine and maintain necessary fire precautions on their premises. If you need any further advice please dont hesitate to contact us.
Electrical, gas or oil fired heaters, fixed or portable
Hot processes such as welding, grinding work or cooking
Engines or boilers
Faulty or misused electrical equipment
Lighting equipment such as halogen lamps
Hot surfaces and obstruction of equipment ventilation
Friction from drive belts etc
Metal impact such as metal tools striking each other
Flammable liquid based products such as paints varnish thinners and adhesives.
Flammable liquids and solvents such as petrol, white spirit, methylated spirit and paraffin.
Paper and card
Plastics, rubber and foam such as polystyrene and polyurethane, e.g. the foam used in upholstered furniture.
Flammable gases such as liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and acetylene.
Furniture, including fixtures and fittings
Loose packaging material
Waste materials, in particular finely divided materials such as wood shavings, off-cuts, dust, paper and textiles.
Hardboard, chipboard, blockboard walls or ceilings
Synthetic ceiling or wall coverings, such as polystyrene tiles.
Natural airflow through doors, windows and other openings
Mechanical air conditioning systems and air handling systems
Some chemicals (oxidising materials), that can provide a fire with additional oxygen and so, help it burn. These chemicals should be identified on their container by the manufacturer or supplier who can advise as to their safe use and storage.
Oxygen supplies from cylinder storage and piped systems; e.g. oxygen used in welding processes or for healthcare purposes.
Remove unnecessary sources of heat from the workplace or replace them with safer alternatives. Ensure that use of heat-producing equipment follows the manufacturers’ instructions and is properly maintained.
Install machinery and equipment which has been designed to minimise the risk of fire and explosions. Replace naked flame and radiant heaters with fixed convector heaters or a central heating system. Ensure that all electrical fuses and circuit breakers etc are of the correct rating and suitable for the purpose.
Ensure that sources of heat do not arise from faulty or overloaded electrical or mechanical equipment such as overheating bearings.
Keep ducts and flues clean
Where appropriate, operate a permit to work system for maintenance workers and contractors who carry out hot work involving processes such as welding or flame cutting.
Operate a safe smoking policy in designated smoking areas and do not allow smoking elsewhere.
Do not allow matches, lighters and other naked flames in high fire risk areas.
Ensure that all equipment that could provide a source of ignition even when not in use is left in a safe condition.
Make sure that any smouldering material including smokers material, is properly extinguished before leaving the workplace.
Take precautions to avoid the risk of arson.
Remove flammable materials and substances, or reduce them to what is needed to run the business
Replace materials and substances with ones that are less flammable;
Ensure flammable materials, liquids (and vapours) and gases are handled, transported, stored and used properly;
Ensure safe separation distances between flammable materials;
Store highly flammable substances in fire-resisting stores and, where necessary, keep a minimum quantity in fire-resisting cabinets in the workroom;
Remove, cover or treat large areas of flammable wall and ceiling linings to reduce the rate of flame spread across the surface;
Replacing or repairing furniture with damaged upholstery where the foam filling is exposed;
Ensure that flammable waste materials and rubbish are not allowed to build up and are carefully stored until properly disposed of;
Take action to avoid storage areas being vulnerable to arson or vandalism;
Ensure good housekeeping
Improve the fire-resistance of the workplace building.
Close all doors, windows and other openings not required for ventilation, particularly out of working hours;
Shut down ventilation systems which are not essential to the function of the workplace;
Store oxidising materials away from heat sources or flammable materials
Control the use and storage of oxygen cylinders
Can the existing means of detection discover a fire quickly enough to raise an alarm in time for all the occupants to escape to a safe place?
Can the means for giving warning be clearly heard and understood throughout the whole premises when initiated from any single point?
If the fire detection and warning system is electrically powered, does it have a back-up power supply?
Have you told your employees about your fire warning system, will they know how to operate it and respond to it?
Are there instructions for your employees on how to operate the fire warning system and what action they should take on hearing a warning?
Have you included the fire detection and fire warning arrangements in your emergency plan?
How long will it take for all the occupants to escape to a place of safety once a fire has been detected?
Is that a reasonable length of time or will it take too long?
Are there enough exits and are they in the right place?
Are the type and size of exits suitable and sufficient for the number of people likely to need to use them (eg wide enough for wheelchair users)?
In the event of fire, could all available exits be affected or will at least one route from any part of the premises remain available?
Are all escape routes easily identifiable, free from any obstructions and adequately illuminated? Have you trained your staff in using the means of escape?
Are there instructions about the means of escape for your employees?
Have you included your means of escape arrangements in your emergency plan?
Are the extinguishers suitable for the purpose and of sufficient capacity?
Are there sufficient extinguishers sited throughout the workplace?
Are the right types of extinguishers located close to the fire hazards and people get to them without exposing themselves to risk?
Are the locations of the extinguishers obvious or do you need to highlight their location?
Have the people likely to use the fire extinguishers been given adequate instruction and training?
Have you included use of fire-fighting equipment in your emergency plan?
Do you regularly check all fire doors and escape routes and associated lighting and signs?
Do you regularly check all your firefighting equipment?
Do you regularly check your fire detection and alarm equipment?
Do you regularly check any other equipment that help means of escape arrangements in the building?
Are there instructions for employees about testing of equipment?
Are those who test and maintain the equipment properly trained to do so?
Do you have an emergency plan?
Does the emergency plan take account of all risks and circumstances?
Are your employees familiar with the plan, trained in its use and involved in testing it?
Is the emergency plan made available to all who need to be aware of it?
Are the procedures to be followed clearly indicated throughout the workplace?
Have you considered all the people likely to be in your workplace and others who share the building?