Business Fire Safety Week in Oxfordshire (6-12 Sept)
Businesses are being advised not to overlook fire safety, in a new campaign launched by Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service.
The campaign aims to make businesses aware of their fire safety responsibilities; complying with legislation to keep both premises and occupants safe.
Many Oxfordshire businesses had to close their doors or change ways of working due to COVID-19. As they reopen, owners and those responsible must review fire risk assessments to reflect any changes they have made in response to the pandemic. Staff should be suitably trained, fire equipment checked and maintained; and checks made to ensure that any COVID-secure measures do not compromise fire safety.
Rob MacDougall, Chief Fire Officer, Oxfordshire County Council’s Fire and Rescue Service, said: “Help is at hand for local businesses. We offer free advice and guidance to minimise the risk of fire in the workplace. This fire safety support is available throughout the year, with the campaign week encouraging people not to delay reviewing safety measures.”
Advice is also available to businesses on reducing the risk of arson by taking simple steps to protect premises. There were more than 4,700 deliberate fires in businesses in the UK in 2019-20. Most attacks are unplanned and opportunist crimes.
Oxfordshire Fire and Rescue Service provides help in reducing false alarms in the workplace, which often have an impact on business productivity. With around 44 per cent of fire service call outs in the UK being as a result of false alarms they increase pressure on fire service resources and time, both of which could be spent on dealing with genuine emergencies, community prevention and protection activities.
Councillor Neil Fawcett, Oxfordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Community Services and Safety, said: "Our fire service is committed to helping businesses get back to work, so they can continue to make their valued contribution to the economy and local communities.
“The last eighteen months have been extremely challenging, but fires can have devastating impacts on businesses, with many never recovering. That’s why help and guidance are available; and I encourage business owners to get in touch with our fire safety team."
Business owners can book fire safety advice by emailing Community.firstname.lastname@example.org
False alarms in business:
False alarms - impact:
Protecting business from arson: