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Fire Safety Policy

Index

       Statement of Intent

  1. Introduction & Scope

  2. Practical Fire Safety Arrangements

  3. Planning

  4. Organisation & Control

  5. Monitoring

  6. Review

  7. Fire Emergency Plan

 

Statement of Intent

Friends of Goadby Marwood Village Hall (FoGMVH) recognises the continual risk to its premises and users, and will assess the fire risk in the workplace to ensure that procedures are in place to educate and warn people of such an occurrence.

We are committed to:

  • Compliance with statutory requirements as a minimum

  • Assessing and controlling the risks that arise from our events and activities

  • Providing a safe and healthy working environment

  • Providing effective information and instruction

  • Consulting with Trustees and Volunteers on fire safety matters

  • Monitoring and reviewing our systems and prevention measures to ensure their effectiveness

  • Ensuring adequate resources are made available to deal with fire safety issues

D Kitson, Chair FoGMVH, January 2024

1. Introduction & Scope
  • Fire is a hazard in any part of the premises. Its consequences include the threat to the lives or health and safety of relevant persons, damage to or loss of property and severe interruption to normal business activities or opportunities.

  • Managing the risk of fire demands fire safety precautions based on a combination of appropriate prevention and protection measures depending upon building use and occupancy.

  • This fire safety management and fire emergency plan applies to all parts of the premises which are to under the control of The Friends of Goadby Marwood Village Hall.  Its requirements extend to all persons at those premises including volunteers, visitors and contractors whether permanently or temporarily engaged.

  • This fire safety management and fire emergency plan applies to all people using or hiring the premises. In this respect everyone is expected to comply with these relevant fire safety arrangements and policy. 

  • The Friends of Goadby Marwood Village Hall will, so far as is reasonably practicable, and in accordance with legal obligations and standards:

    • provide and maintain passive and active fire prevention, protection, and measures according to the purpose or use of the building, the numbers of occupants and the activities or processes undertaken therein.

    • provide comprehensible and relevant information to all users, through the provision and availability of emergency instructions or fire safety plans and the risks identified by relevant risk assessments.

    • provide an up-to-date procedure to be followed in the event of a fire occurring, including a floor plan with emergency exits as well as displaying fire safety notices and fire assembly points.

    • carry out and keep under review a fire risk assessment to analyse building and process fire risks, the existing preventive and protective measures and to identify areas for improvement.

    • have in place a programme of works to improve or maintain the existing fire safety specifications.

2. Practical Fire Safety Arrangements
  • As part of our fire safety management system, in addition to the management action outlined below, considerations of passive and active fire precautions are essential.

  • Passive fire precautions are concerned with the physical conditions in premises which are designed to facilitate containment of fire by design, construction and layout, effective communication, and safe evacuation:

    • materials specification, design, construction and inspection of buildings, fire doors and escape routes considering the needs of all users and contractors

    • appropriate safe and secure location of building services e.g. gas cylinders and electricity

    • provision of clear fire safety signage for escape routes and final exits in conformity with the Health and Safety (Safety Signs and Signals) Regulations 1996 and Equality Act 2010

    • provision of prominently located fire action notices to inform people of the action to be taken in the event of fire

    • education and training of volunteers in fire safety arrangements, in particular evacuation procedures and drills.

  • Active fire precautions are those features of the fire safety management system that detect and operate in the event of a fire, including fire alarm systems, emergency lighting systems and firefighting equipment. In particular:

    • the installation, inspection, and monthly testing of fire detection system

    • the appropriate location, operation and monthly inspection of adequate (emergency) lighting systems for fire escape routes

    • the provision of appropriate type and location of fire extinguishing equipment. Maintenance of portable fire extinguishers in accordance with advice, currently every 5 years.

  • The fire safety arrangements will be based on:

    • effective planning, organisation, control, monitoring and review of protective and preventative measures

    • fire safety risk assessments and building audits

    • fire safety systems and maintenance

    • fire evacuation drills, where appropriate

    • building design, alterations, and commissioning.

3. Planning
  • Fire Risk Assessments are a requirement of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order and are a structured approach to determining the risk of fire occurring in a premises or from a work activity, and identifying the precautions necessary to eliminate, reduce or manage the risk. The outcome of the risk assessment must be incorporated in the fire emergency plan (see Section 7).

  • Fire Risk Assessments must be carried out and reviewed regularly. An annual, informal fire risk assessment will be completed by trustees with a commissioned, formal fire risk assessment every 3 years. In addition, an informal fire risk assessment will be completed by a trustee when there is any building alteration or following a fire incident/emergency, etc. 

  • The risk evaluation and appropriate control measures to be considered will include those practical fire safety arrangements outlined above.   

  • Risk assessments must consider those who could be affected, e.g. numbers involved, their location, physical and mental capabilities. The significant findings of the fire safety risk assessment will be made known to all other responsible persons as appropriate.

  • Provisions will be made for the safe evacuation of disabled people.

  • All users and contractors will be made aware of the fire procedures, for example by the use of fire action notices in areas they will congregate.

  • Testing of building passive and active fire evacuation systems are to be conducted by appointed competent person, at agreed appropriate times during normal hours and in line with current British test standards.

  • A fire safety log book will be kept to record the details of all tests on passive and active preventative and protective measures.

4. Organisation & Control
  • Specific individual responsibility for overall responsibility for Fire Safety, Maintenance, Emergency Plans and Evacuation will be communicated by means of the hire agreement and The Friends of Goadby Marwood Village Hall website.

  • The Responsible Person will:

    • ensure that this Policy is in place, properly implemented and reviewed

    • ensure that arrangements are in place for the completion of Fire Risk Assessments, including, where appropriate, technical surveys in respect of fire protection

    • ensure that fire, security, and health and safety arrangements are in place.

  • The nominated person with responsibility for premises or parts of premises will:

    • ensure that Fire Risk Assessments are carried out and that a Hot Work Permit is issued for work involving naked flame, welding, soldering, torch cutting, grinding etc

    • ensure, in conjunction with the outcome of the Fire Risk Assessment that the optimum number and type of fire extinguishers are installed in appropriate locations.

    • ensure that fire alarm systems, emergency lighting and fire extinguishers are appropriately located and properly maintained

    • ensure that a robust and effective emergency plan is in place to safely evacuate all persons using the Village Hall. This emergency plan must consider people with mobility, some sensory and some learning impairments, including those with temporary impairments, which will affect their ability to evacuate premises promptly.

    • arrange for the emergency plan to be shared with all users to inform them of what to do in the event of fire, particularly safe evacuation. This will be made available to each hall hirer, displayed on the wall of the Village Hall and will be brought to the attention of the hirer at the point that the key is given to them.

    • ensure that a copy of the current Fire Risk Assessment for the premises is readily accessible.

    • ensure that the Fire Risk Assessment is reviewed at least annually, informally or formally in accordance with the locally agreed schedule or whenever there is any building alteration, change of occupation or use of the premises or following an incident involving fire

    • ensure that effective arrangements are in place for contacting the emergency services, likely to be the users’ mobile phone

    • ensure that the Fire and Rescue Service are aware of any significant hazards associated with the premises e.g. gas cylinders, storage of fuel, COSHH substances, etc.

  • Users of the Village Hall must:

    • ensure they are familiar with the emergency plan

    • be familiar with all escape routes

    • not wedge fire doors open, nor block or obstruct them

    • be aware of the action to be taken on discovering a fire, hearing a fire alarm, for raising the alarm (including the location of air horns and how they are used) and calling the fire and rescue service

    • promptly evacuate the premises, in accordance with the emergency plan, to a place of safety without putting themselves and others at risk, and NOT attempt to extinguish a fire unless they have been specifically trained

    • comply with the No Smoking legislation

    • be vigilant when using the open fire and ensure that the fire is safe to be left at the end of the event, if necessary, staying in the Village Hall until the fire is safe to leave. The spark guard should be left in place at all times during and after the event.

5. Monitoring
  • The following Key Performance Indicators will be used to monitor the effectiveness of the Fire Safety Management Plan:

    • number of fires recorded annually / number of fire related incidents

    • measuring the number of Fire Service call outs against cause

    • number and nature of enforcement, alterations, or prohibition notices from statutory authorities

    • annual audit of all fire systems by the responsible person.

6. Review
  • Annual audit of all fire systems to ascertain compliance with not only statutory provisions but with this Fire Safety Policy.

  • Reactive reviews will take place following a fire safety event occurring.

  • A review will also be undertaken following a fire, changes to the building’s construction and facilities, new procedures, new equipment, new materials and any other changes.

7. Fire Emergency Plan
  • Information Distribution

    • Emergency exit / route signage

    • Fire action notices

    • Access to the fire policy and procedure via the website and hall hire agreement

  • What Village Hall Users Should Do If They Discover a Fire:

    • Raise the alarm by operating the nearest push button alarm

    • Evacuate to the Fire Assembly Point

    • Leave the building by the nearest exit

    • Do not stop or return to collect personal belongings

    • Close any doors on route without delaying your escape

    • You must remain at the Fire Assembly Point

    • Return to the building only when authorised to do so

  • What Village Hall Users Should Do If They Hear the Fire Alarm:

    • Leave the building by the nearest exit

    • Close any doors on route without delaying your escape

    • Do not stop or return to collect personal belongings

    • Do not use any firefighting equipment unless you have been trained

    • Do pass any information to the building responsible person at the assembly point

    • You must remain at the assembly place

    • Return to the building only when authorised to do so

  • Fire Assembly Points:

    • The assembly points will be communicated via signage. 

    • Suitable signage will also be in place to identify the safe assembly points away from entry routes for the emergency services.

This policy will be reviewed annually.

Issue: 1

Last reviewed: January 2024

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