5 Things a Fire Brigade Looks for in Your Fire Risk Assessment

David Hills
Posted by David Hills on Nov 3, 2021 3:19:10 PM

Fire safety is a subject of fervent debate and discussion in the aftermath of the Grenfell Tower disaster and subsequent changes brought about by the introduction of the Fire Safety Act 2021.

Organisations, property and building safety managers and businesses have a duty to comply with fire safety regulations to protect the public, reduce the risk of fires and prevent injuries and fatalities.

If you are responsible for producing a Fire Risk Assessment (FRA), it is essential to be aware of changes in fire and building safety and to ensure that you implement best practice guidelines.

Fire and rescue services attended 151,086 fires in the 12-month period leading up to the end of March 2021.

This article will highlight key factors the fire brigade will look for in your

5 things the fire brigade will look for in a Fire Risk Assessment

  1. 1 - Clear confirmation of an evacuation strategy: The FRA should provide a detailed and clear understanding of how individuals will get out of the building in the event of an emergency, and whether this strategy is appropriate.
  3. The strategy should be tailored to the individual building and its occupants, and should be considered holistically with the other fire safety arrangements within the building.
  1. 2 - Consideration of passive fire protection in relation to the specific site and its evacuation strategy. Passive fire protection is designed to contain and prevent fires from spreading to minimise the risk of injuries and facilitate swift, seamless evacuation.
  3. An effective FRA should identify risks related to fire and smoke spreading to other parts of the building and provide information about the upkeep and maintenance of both active and passive fire protection measures. 
  1. 3 - Suitable assessment of the risks posed to the occupants of the building or those who utilise the premises. There are several factors that may influence the ability to evacuate, including the age of the occupant, their health status, and their mobility.
  3. An FRA should take these factors into consideration and explain how the evacuation strategy is tailored and targeted towards those who reside in or use the building. Analysis of occupant characteristics will inform everything from suitable travel distances to the detection and alarm systems in use.
  1. 4 - Confirmation that the level of fire detection and alert is suitable for the building and the evacuation strategy currently in place. Different buildings pose different challenges and potential obstacles in fire safety or evacuation.
  3. The FRA should ensure that there is an appropriate level of fire detection and alert for the site. 
  1. 5 - Identification of overall risk to life in addition to general fire hazards. The Fire Risk Assessment should provide detail about the primary risk factors, as well as the potential for loss of life. The Responsible Person should also be aware of the requirements of their role.

When working on enhancing protection in line with the new Fire Safety Bill, it is important to understand the benefits of a Fire Risk Assessment that goes beyond the legal requirements allowing room for interpretation from fire brigades and providing reassurance for residents and occupants.


The tragic case of Grenfell Tower underlines the dangers posed by building fires.

An FRA is both a ‘snap shot’ in time and a living document, it is beneficial to review your FRA regularly to ensure that it is suitable and sufficient to protect the occupants of the building.

If you are looking to conduct a new FRA, or you would like advice about an existing FRA, please don’t hesitate to contact our dedicated safety team to book a free consultation.

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