If you are an employer or you own premises, you have a legal duty to carry out a fire safety risk assessment and to make sure that your workplace and the people who work there are kept safe from fire and its effects.

How do I manage fire safety in the workplace?

A good starting point in managing fire safety is to complete a fire risk assessment. This will help you to identify who might be at risk if there is a fire and what measures would need to be in place in order to protect them.

You will also need to make sure that your workplace contains the necessary fire safety precautions and that these are maintained. You should also provide information, instruction and training to your employees about fire prevention and what to do if a fire starts.

For more information on your legal responsibilities please visit the Northern Ireland Fire and Rescue Service website:

How do I carry out a fire risk assessment?

Carrying out a fire risk assessment simply means looking at your work activities and workplace and deciding whether there is the potential for fire to occur and cause harm to people in and around the premises, then deciding whether you have taken enough precautions or need to do more to prevent the harm.

Carrying out a fire risk assessment will help you to decide:

  • what the chances are of a fire starting in your workplace
  • whether a fire in your workplace would put people in danger
  • whether your existing fire precautions are suitable
  • whether more precautions are needed

If you have five or more employees you must write your fire risk assessment down.

For a step-by-step guide on completing a fire risk assessment please see the HSENI publication 'Managing fire safety in the workplace'.

Where can I find a fire risk assessment template and a worked example?

The following example fire risk assessment shows how a small business might approach fire risk assessment within their work. This example can be used as a guide when thinking about the hazards in your own business and the steps that you would need to take in order to control the risks. A blank template is also provided to help you carry out your own fire risk assessment:

Resources

Key legislation