All London Commercial Premises and Residential Blocks of Flats should Review & Revise their current Fire Safety Risk Assessment to reflect the implications of Covid -19.

Most Premises have been affected by the Covid-19 virus, premises have been shutdown, or numbers of Staff reduced and/or Staff working from home. It’s the identified ‘Responsible Persons’ responsibility to reflect the imposed changes in their Fire Safety Risk Assessment.

If the premise has been shutdown then you should reflect in your Fire Safety Risk Assessment the procedures you have followed in making the premise safe i.e. ensuring that electrical appliances have been switched off and unplugged. Heating has been turned off and the premise is secure and safe from arson to name but a few.

If your premise is open but you have only a skeleton Staff operating then you need to ensure they are in a safe environment. Do they know what to do if a Fire broke out – are there sufficient Fire Marshals in place? Is the ‘Responsible Person’ checking on them frequently so that they feel supported?

If you have Staff working from Home then the ‘Responsible Person’ needs to ensure that there are procedures in place for safe working and communication lines are kept open with frequent checks on the employees wellbeing.

London Fire Risk Assessments has prepared a Questionnaire designed to help the ‘Responsible Persons’ consider various points within their Fire Safety Risk Assessment that may need to be ‘reviewed and revised’. The Questionnaire is free and is London Fire Risk Assessments way of helping business through these tough times. Contact us on 0781 8888626 or via email information@londonfireriskassessments.co.uk we are here to help!

Covid-19 and working from Home – time to have a Fire Safety check to keep you and your family safe!

With thousands of people across the country working from home, playing their part in the war against Covid-19, it may be time to take just a few minutes to do a Fire Safety check!

A few things to consider:

Electrical – with families being isolated, technology is playing a huge part in keeping everyone connected and entertained. Double check that you are not overloading extension leads, sockets are not showing signs of overheating and chargers are not left plugged in and unattended.

Heaters – it may be Spring but there is still a nip in the air so the heating may be on in the evenings. Double check that soft furnishing, clothes and other combustible materials are away from the heater and never cover electric convector heaters.

Smoking – you may or may not smoke in the house but if you do try not to smoke in bed or if you are feeling sleepy. Make sure you extinguish the cigarette properly and always use an ashtray or metal container.

Candles – creating an atmosphere and a change of mood is a nice idea, an excuse to dress up and enjoy a nice meal! Never leave a candle unattended and never position them near soft furnishings and finally make sure you extinguish them properly!

Know the Plan – London Fire Brigade have had a long running campaign to encourage families to ‘know the plan’ in case of an emergency. Make sure that the means of escape out of the home is kept clear and everyone knows what to do if things went wrong! This is particularly important if you have vulnerable or disabled persons in the home.

If you need any further advice on Fire Safety then contact London Fire Risk Assessments on 0781 8888626 or email information@londonfireriskassessments.co.uk our advice is free!

Look after your Employees working from home in these unprecedented times!

As an Employer, you have the same Health & Safety responsibilities for your Employees even if they are working from home. Many Employees have been asked to temporarily work from home – here are a few things you must consider:

How will you keep in touch with them?

Can their work activity be done safely?

Do you need to put control measures in place to protect them?

Employees working alone are more at risk as they have no direct supervision or anyone to help them if things go wrong. Keep in regular contact with them to ensure that they are healthy and safe. If contact is poor, Employees may feel isolated or abandoned and this can affect their stress levels and mental health. Put procedures in place so you can keep in direct contact with your Employees – Look after your people and they will look after you!

Contact London Fire Risk Assessments if you feel you need some support – our advice is free and we are only a phone call away 0781 8888626

Unoccupied Buildings – Fire Safety Guidance

Unoccupied buildings continue to generate significant findings and concerns caused mainly by deliberate Fires, theft of fixtures and fittings and malicious damage.

Insurance Companies see an increase in the number of claims when Premises, Buildings are not in use, which they believe could have been prevented if the properties were properly secured and effectively managed.

In order to help persons protect these properties, a leading Insurance Company have developed the following guidance to outline the level of protection they recommend for vacant properties.

“Fire – the most common cause of fire in the United Kingdom is deliberate Fire setting (arson). Unoccupied Premises, Buildings are particularly vulnerable as they are unattended and therefore become a target of thieves and vandals, who often also start Fires for reasons including to destroy evidence of committed crimes.

To reduce the risk of deliberate Fires, it is very important to ensure that all material that could help to start and spread a Fire is removed from both inside and outside of the Premise, Building.

Non occupied sites can also be vulnerable to fly-tipping, therefore it is also important that a regular inspections regime is implemented to ensure that any damage to the Premise, Building or accumulations of waste and rubbish are quickly addressed.

It is typical that once minor damage has been caused to a property or low level fly tipping takes place, this tends to escalate into more damage and larger incidents. Prompt repairs and waste removal are essential to minimise the risk of the property being targeted for further attack.

It should be considered if it is appropriate for Mains electrical services to be disconnected, other than circuits required for Fire alarms or intruder alarm systems.

Contents and fixtures are often left in the buildings, which provide ready fuel for a Fire and it should be decided if these should be removed or minimalised. Additionally any internal doors that are missing or left open should be repaired and closed. Such actions can assist significantly in preventing a Fire from developing quickly and minimise damage in the event of a Fire taking place.”

London Fire Risk Assessments advice is for you to inform your insurance Company of any proposed closure or any other circumstance which could affect any future Claim. Also, even unoccupied Buildings should still be the subject of appropriate Risk Assessments, including an up to date Fire Risk Assessment. If you need help with this call us on 0781 8888626 or email and we will talk you through the best way for you to complete a Fire Risk Assessment.

London Fire Risk Assessments – message from MD Clive Lewis TIFireE

London Fire Risk Assessments is continuing a working lifetime’s vocation in Firefighting and Fire Safety, devoted and committed to saving lives and we are “Self-Isolating” and “Working from Home”.

We are only an e-mail or telephone call away and we are available, as always to help you with any Fire Safety concerns you may have.

Remember our advice is free – Keep safe!