What happens to your fire risk assessment when the fire service goes on strike?

When we carry out fire risk assessments for our clients we make recommendations on when they should be reviewed next. It depends on the risk level of the working environment , but in normal risk environments that’s usually every one or two years – unless circumstances change.

A fire fighters strike constitutes a change in circumstances. Fire risk assessments are usually created on the basis of the expected attendance times of emergency services. They invariably take account of where the local fire station is in relation to the fire evacuation strategy.

If the fire fighters are not there the response times are likely to very different – even if replacements are found. Technically that means that every single fire risk assessment that has been written has to be reviewed (and our advice is that you give this some serious consideration, simply to protect your workforce and premises). If you have a fire you could find that your fire risk assessment has literally and figuratively gone up in smoke.

However, you’re probably not going get into trouble for not carrying out this review as the people who carry out inspections to check up on fire safety are on strike!