According to the latest report, 70% of Lancashire businesses have failed fire alarm tests which have been carried out in the past year. This shows a very poor level of safety across the county which could be putting people's lives at risk.
The report was conducted by independent fire experts. In the report, it revealed that 3636 audits were carried out between April last year and March this year, but only 1089 of these orders were found to be fully compliant with Lancashire Fire and rescue services regulations.
Adhering to fire safety is not something that is simply recommended. It is actually the law to carry out full and comprehensive fire risk assessments. If you do not, you could be served an enforcement notice. In fact, in the area of Lancashire 376 enforcement notices were handed out over the past year.
It is thought that many small businesses are really feeling the pressure of the recession so as a result, they are putting fire safety to the bottom of their priorities which is a dangerous decision to take.
Also, business managers often consider having fire extinguishers as being effective fire safety. However, these fire extinguishers are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to keeping your employees safe. There is no guarantee that the fire extinguisher will even work and if there is a larger fire, employees may become panicked and could act irrationally. This is why a full fire and safety plan and procedure should be in place, so that each employee knows exactly what they should do in the event of a fire.
Fire drills should also be conducted regularly, at least annually, so that new employees can learn the procedure and existing employees can be reminded of the vital importance of this kind of fire safety training.
Fire alarms should also be tested every week. Simply press the button on top of the fire alarm and this will notify you as to the working condition of the fire alarm. If the fire alarm does not give out a beep sound, then it might not be working and you need to make sure that you fix this yourself or get a professional to look at it for you. If in any doubt, you should ask a fire safety expert to conduct the tests for you. They will know exactly what to do and may also advise other areas of your property which could be fire safety improved.
Fire risk assessments are crucial, be it for the safety of employees, customers or tenants, and these statistics have highlighted the amount of businesses not treating them as a complete necessity. Make sure you get your premises checked out before it’s too late.