Fire Strategy is Mightier than the Fire Stopper

Over the last year I, along with most other fire risk assessors, fire safety consultants and fire engineers, have added another string to our fire strategy bow: the Type 2 Fire Risk Assessment or, as they are more commonly known, Passive Fire Protection Surveys.

What is it?

The Passive Fire Protection Survey looks for anything that would prevent the containment of a fire or slow the spread of fire.

Type 2 Fire Risk Assessments originate from the building regulation guide for purpose-built flats but has extended into the commercial sector. This predominantly covers hotels, care homes, and other sleeping and high-rise buildings.

Why is it important?

Even modern buildings experience changes over time; extensions added, improvements made, and damages repaired. With budget and time restraints it is easy to focus on the aesthetics and functionality of the solution and let fire safety fall by the wayside. Don’t let this happen.

We cannot stress the importance of the Passive Fire Survey enough. Since delivering the surveys we have seen some shocking issues; broken fire doors, open cabling shafts that would carry fire throughout the building and service penetration from onsite works onto escape routes and stairwells.

What does it mean to you?

Furtively sealing every gap and shutting every door in the building in the name of fire safety when the fire assessors pass by isn’t enough. I’m sure instances of colleagues being batt and mastic-ed in their offices, having left the fire door ajar accidentally, happens more often than not! But as a consultant working on behalf of the client, it is our role to ensure that you do what is needed and not just close what is open.

Our comprehensive fire strategy gives all the details needed to understand the construction of your premises and the fire resistance protection required for each area; escape routes, basements, plant rooms, etc.

How can we help?

To minimise the impact of a Passive Fire Protection Survey it is worth working with your contractors if you are considering any works at your premises. Contractors are legally bound by Regulation 38 to provide fire safety information to your 'responsible person' at the completion of a project, or where the building or extension is first occupied. Don’t worry if you forgot to ask, the documentation can be requested for work that has been done years before. We can then use this to support your Passive Fire Protection Survey.

Should the worst happen and a fire breaks out do not let it go from bad to worse. Make sure that the fire cannot go any further with a Passive Fire Protection Survey.

For more information about our Passive Fire Protection Surveys and advice about keeping your workplace safe, contact Matt Spivey at Synergy Fire Engineering on (0)843 658 1310 or email [email protected].

Matt Spivey is Managing Director of Synergy Fire Engineering, the only BAFE SP205 accredited Fire Risk Assessors in Derbyshire. A member of the Institution of Fire Engineers, Matt is highly qualified and holds a BEng (Hons) in Fire Engineering.  For more information about our fire safety training call Synergy Fire Engineering on 01629 828 881 or email [email protected]