What is the Legal Requirement for Fire Risk Assessments

What is the Legal Requirement for Fire Risk Assessments

Fire risk assessments are the primary tool used by most organisations to reduce the number and severity of fire-related incidents.

A fire risk assessment is something that you should have done for every building in which you work. Sadly, however, not everyone does so there are buildings that don’t get a fire risk assessment until something goes wrong and there is a fire – at this point, it might be too late! See fire marshal training

This article will provide you with all manner of information related to legal requirements, common fire risks and how to eliminate them.


What is a fire risk assessment?

A fire risk assessment is a document that helps you determine the risks of a fire occurring in your building. It’s a process that asks questions about your building and its contents and uses those answers to determine how likely it is for a fire to occur.

The purpose of this document is to help you plan for what might happen if there is a fire so that you can be prepared to avoid or mitigate damage.

A fire risk assessment will include information like:

  • The structure of the building and any areas that are more prone to fires (like kitchens)
  • The number of people who work in the space, their ages, and what they do there
  • What materials are used near/in the building (like flammable liquids)
  • How often people access the building (if it’s open 24 hours or only during business hours)

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Fire risk assessment – why are they important?

Fire risk assessments are used to identify what could go wrong in your workplace and how you can fix it. This means that you can make sure that your employees are safe from fire-related hazards, as well as any other hazards that might exist in your workplace.

Fire risk assessments are important because they help you to prevent fires from occurring in the first place. By identifying potential problems before they happen, you can take steps toward preventing them from happening in the first place.

What the law says about fire risk assessments

Every year, in the United Kingdom, over 200 people are killed by fire every year. That’s why it’s important to make sure you have a fire risk assessment in place.

You’re legally required to have a fire risk assessment carried out if your building is over 5,000 square metres (5,382 square yards).

The law also says that if you’re planning to refurbish or develop a building larger than 200 square metres (about 215 yards), you must carry out a fire risk assessment before work starts on the project. This means that if your company is moving offices or renovating its premises, you’ll need to make sure that everything is up-to-date with current legislation.

Who is responsible for carrying out a fire risk assessment?

The fire risk assessment must be carried out by someone who has been trained to do so, and the person carrying out the assessment must be independent of the building owner. The person responsible for conducting the fire risk assessment should have a thorough understanding of fire protection systems and how they are installed. It is also important that the person conducting the assessment is able to identify hazards that could cause a fire and has knowledge of how to reduce these risks. 

Are there different kinds of fire risk assessments?

Yes, there are two types of fire risk assessments: a full-scale audit and an audit that focuses on specific areas or concerns.

Every component of an audit, including the inspection of your property to verify compliance with fire safety laws, is included in a full-scale audit. This kind of audit is often carried out by an outside organization, such the neighborhood fire department.

An audit that focuses on specific areas or concerns is only concerned with one area or concern, such as ensuring compliance with building regulations or ensuring all employees have been trained in the use of extinguishers. This type of audit can be conducted internally or externally, depending on your needs and resources at any given time.

What types of premises need an FRA?

It is important to be aware of the legal requirements that apply to your premises. This can help you to reduce the risk of fire and therefore limit the damage caused.

The following types of premises need an FRA:

  • Houses with 3 or more storeys or flats over 1 storey
  • Buildings with 4 or more storeys in height
  • Premises containing non-domestic accommodation (such as hotels, hostels, boarding houses, flats and sheltered accommodation)
  • Any building with a total area greater than 300 square metres
  • You have 20 or more employees
  • There is a high probability of fire due to the nature of your premises (e.g., a warehouse)
  • You have an increased risk of fire due to special circumstances such as the presence of flammable substances or materials (e.g., chemicals or gas tanks).

How do I get a fire risk assessment done?

There are three ways to get an FRA done:

1. You can do it yourself — but be careful! FRA’s can be complicated, and they’re not something that you want to mess up.

2. You can hire a professional who will do it for you, or

3. You can use software like [company name] to create one yourself

Are there any other responsibilities connected with fire risk assessments?

The main responsibility of a fire risk assessment is to ensure that your business is safe. But there are also other responsibilities connected with fire risk assessments, including:

  • Have a document that outlines the fire risks in your business
  • Make sure your employees know how to use their fire extinguishers
  • Having an evacuation plan in case of emergencies


A professional fire risk assessment is required by law for all fire risk evaluations. The individual doing the examination must be qualified and experienced to do so.

The person doing the evaluation should write up a fire risk assessment report, and they must both sign and date it. Whoever owns or resides in the property where it was assessed must maintain this.

In understanding the legal requirements for fire risk assessments, we hope this information has been useful. If you are unsure of how to comply with these standards, especially if you are a small business or non-profit organization, we strongly advise you to get expert guidance.

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Dangerous Substances and Explosive Atmospheres Regulations 2002 (DSEAR) click here.
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