For details on our approach to enforcement during the coronavirus pandemic and other advice please see below:
Desk top audits
Under the requirements of The (fire safety) Order 2005, Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service must continue to enforce fire safety legislation to keep the public and businesses safe. If at the time of the call you are not able to answer the questions due to business needs you will be offered an appointment at a scheduled time agreeable by both parties. This appointment will be confirmed by email from the officer who will be carrying out the desk top audit.
In normal circumstances the audit would be carried out by visiting your premises, however this is not advisable due to current Government guidance. Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service staff will be asking questions relating to fire safety processes and procedures and asking for supporting documents to be sent to them. This is relevant to support the fire risk assessment for your premises and answers to the questions we are asking.
The information we collect from you will be used to update our contact details and will be used as part of the risk based assessment when we carry out a physical audit post restrictions relating to COVID 19.
The data collected will be stored centrally and securely within Cheshire Fire and Rescue Service for the reasons mentioned at the beginning of the call. This may be used to invite you to free Cheshire Fire and Rescue seminars and/or fire safety events. We keep the minimum amount of data possible and do not share this with any third party.
Latest news and updates from our Protection team:
07/04/2021 - As many businesses are open or looking to re-open in the near future, we urge you not to prop open your fire doors. Propping open fire doors is not a suitable way to ventilate a work space and completely negates the effectiveness of the door.
19/03/2021 - Electrical appliances in the workplace can be fire starters! Ensure staff never overload sockets and they know what to do if they spot damaged or frayed wiring.
19/03/2021 - Human error is one of the causes for a fire starting. Training staff to use equipment safely is important and can help reduce the risks.
18/03/2021 - The responsibility of a workplace fire warden is to ensure everyone gets out of a building safely in the event of a fire. If you are a fire warden then check your responsibilities and the level of training you have received is adequate.
18/03/2021 - Managers have a responsibility to look after staff and any customers on the premises. If you are a manager and haven't had fire safety training then make it a priority to ensure you are clear on your fire safety responsibilities.
17/03/2021 - A key area of fire safety training is evacuation in an emergency. This is so everyone in the building knows what to do if the fire alarms go off. Staff also need to know where manual call points are as part of any drill and the locations of fire extinguishers.
16/03/2021 - If you have employees or clients with learning disabilities then please practice how to evacuate in an emergency, this may need to be done more than every 6 months.
16/03/2021 - If there is a personal emergency evacuation plan for someone in a building then staff need appropriate training. This may include disability evacuation, moving and handling training. Take time today to ensure everyone knows what to do in an emergency.
15/03/2021 - Ensure you always keep a record of any fire safety training carried out on the premises and who has received it. Keep up to date records and follow our advice to stay safe.
19/02/2021 - Avoid letting your takeaway or food business go up in smoke during these unpredictable times. Always ensure cleaning fat or a build-up of cooking oil deposits is an essential task to avoid a devastating fire occurring!
18/02/2021 - Ensure you have the right fire extinguisher for the job! A wet chemical extinguisher is for fat and grease fire, whereas a CO2 extinguisher is for electrical equipment. All extinguishers need regular servicing and trained staff to use them in an emergency.
18/02/2021 - Take five minutes today to assess your business kitchen for safety. Have a check where you've put smaller appliances and if there's a danger. A deep fat fryer or toaster could be a serious hazard if near taps and sinks, which may splash.
17/02/2021 - A blocked extractor duct in a commercial kitchen can create problems associated with Carbon Monoxide (CO), a deadly odourless gas. Clean your systems well, ensure they are regularly serviced and in good working order and fit a CO detector nearby.
17/02/2021 - Wood-fired ovens for cooking pizza or meat can form a creosote residue inside, which is highly flammable. If your business uses this method of cooking then please ensure the residue is regularly cleaned away to help save your business from fire and potentially lives!
16/02/2021 - If you are responsible for a business where food is cooked, and there's a fire, your insurance may be void and you could be closed down. Never leave fat and grease to build up in extractor systems and ensure they are cleaned.
15/02/2021 - We want to highlight a few dangers to people in the food industry after attending 104 cooking related fires over the last 5 years. 54% involved a cooker, fat fryer or because of a fat build-up which ignited in an extractor fan. Take fire seriously.
05/02/2021 - This is a perfect example of how sprinklers work to not only save lives but protect property and possessions within a premises like this. Sprinkler quickly extinguishes fire at a Cheshire nursing home. Visit our website for full details.
04/02/2021 - Do you have a commercial premises? The following video outlines what happens if you were to suffer a fire. If you want any fire safety advice for your business, take a look at our website.
03/02/2021 - A business owner in Chester has recently been ordered to pay more than £7000 after putting lives at risk by not complying with fire regulations. Don't put yourself in a similar situation, we are here to help, we want to help.
15/01/2021 - We understand that Fire Safety legislation can be confusing, however as it is the law you must adhere to it. We are here to help.
15/01/2021 - Studies of human behaviour in an emergency have shown that about two thirds of the time available to escape is taken up by the initial reaction to the developing situation. Make sure you consider this when creating your Fire Risk Assessment.
14/01/2021 - Our Business Safety Advocates are often visiting businesses across Cheshire. If you've already received one of our information packs then please use the enclosed documents to help complete your Fire Risk Assessment.
13/01/2021 - We've produced a blank risk assessment form to help small and medium businesses comply with the requirement of having a fire risk assessment. Please read the introduction carefully for advice and guidance before use.
13/01/2021 - Here we have 5 key points to consider when preparing your Fire Risk Assessment. Visit our website for a more in depth look at each step.
12/01/2021 - What is the difference between a hazard and a risk? Hazard - anything with potential to cause harm. Risk - the chance of that harm occurring.
12/01/2021 - Aims of a Fire Risk Assessment: Identify the fire hazards. Reduce the Risk of hazards causing harm to as low as reasonably practicable. Decide what fire precautions and management arrangements are necessary for the safety of people in your premises if a fire does start.
01/01/2021 - NEVER apply water to a fryer fire, isolate the power if it is safe to do so and call 999. You should have a wet chemical fire extinguisher in your kitchen but staff should only try and tackle a fire if they are trained to do so.
Increased storage of flammable products
Are you storing increased flammable products due to demand relating to COVID-19?
The presence of large amounts of flammables in a premises means that a fire involving the flammables will grow quicker. This in turn means that you have less time to get out of the area. As such, you should look to introduce measures which provide faster warning of fire, shorten the time it takes to get out, and to increase the time available to get out.
Find out more - Increased storage of flammable products
For further updates please follow us on Twitter- @CheshireBFS (opens in new window) and Facebook Cheshire Fire Business Safety Team
Last updated: Monday 10 May 2021