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Fire Safety in Schools

Updated: Apr 10, 2023

According to Zurich Municipal each year in the United Kingdom there are estimated to be between 1400 and 1800 fires in schools, with a direct cost estimated to be in excess of £80 million. School fires vary in the extent of their damage and around 40 or 50 fires each year could be described as serious as they cause damage in excess of £50,000 while around 20 of these involve damage of £250,000 or more. The insurer has now added further detail from its study, including that 40 schools a month were hit by fires in 2019, with around 480 primary and secondary schools affected over the course of the year. The need for effective fire safety management... Fire Risk Assessment The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires the responsible person within a business of 5 or more staff to carry out a fire risk assessment or appoint a competent person to do so on their behalf providing a written record. Article 9 Fire Safety Order "The responsible person shall make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to which relevant persons are exposed for the purpose of identifying the general fire precautions he needs to take to comply with the requirements and prohibitions imposed on him by or under this Order". Once you have completed a fire risk assessment and possible dangers have been identified you must minimise them immediately. A fire risk assessment is not just a tick box exercise you must act on the findings.

Failure to do so could result in prosecution or worse There is no law that states you must have a professional company carry out your fire risk assessment just that the person carrying it out must be competent to do so with the correct skills to assess the building they are in. A schools actual fire safety management is where if organised effectively everything to do with fire safety within the school will fall into place. Areas for consideration for school fire safety management other than normal measures are:

  • Displays inc wall displays, notice boards & their positioning

  • Cloakrooms

  • Coat cooks lining corridors

  • Technology ie science labs (Gas) woodworking (Dust)

  • PEEPS for children where required

  • Staff training in evacuation of pupils

  • Costings of sprinkler systems

  • Business continuity (disruption of education)

We have extensive experience implementing fire safety management procedures within schools, both primary and secondary.

For more information on anything contained within this section please get in touch.

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