Fire risk assessments

an important and necessary factor in fire safety

fire risk assessments

If you're responsible for a building, it’s important to do all you can to reduce the risk of fire to keep people safe. It saves lives, it’s your legal duty, and it makes good business sense. 

What is a Fire Risk Assessment?

A careful look at your premises and the people who use them, from a fire prevention perspective. It’s about understanding the potential risks, then improving your fire safety precautions to keep people safe

Why do it?

If you are a employer, owner or occupier of premises that aren't a 'single private dwelling' (a private home), you need to complete a Fire Risk Assessment. This is a legal requirement – your duty to identify fire risks and and hazards in your premises.

If five or more people work at your premises, you’ll need a written record of your assessment, too. It’s good business sense as well as a legal requirement, often businesses don’t recover after a fire, and effective fire prevention starts with properly understanding the risks.  

Did you know? 

If there's a fire and you haven't met your legal duties to keep people safe, you could be fined and may even spend time in prison. Learn about your legal obligations here.  

How to do a Fire Risk Assessment

Controlling fire risks is an important part of managing a property. In order to be able to protect against the risks of fire, the first step is to identify these risks and this is where the fire risk assessment comes in.  A legal demand for all ‘non-domestic’ premises, fire risk assessments (or FRAs) are a snapshot of how protected any given property is to ensure the safety of its occupants in the event of a fire. The FRA also identifies corrective actions and further steps to achieve an appropriate level of fire safety.


Broadly speaking, assessments are conducted in five key steps:

  • Identify the fire hazards.
  • Identify people at risk.
  • Evaluate, remove or reduce the risks.
  • Record your findings, prepare an emergency plan and provide training.
  • Review and update the fire risk assessment regularly.

who would check my fire risk assessment?

Your local Fire Brigade. Inspecting premises is part of their duty to keep people safe from fire. If your premises aren't safe, or you haven't done an assessment, you may be fined. If they believe people are at risk, may even have to close your business until you can make it safe for employees and members of the public.  

Who should do my fire risk assessment?

It depends on how large or complex your business or organisation is. If your business is larger or more complex, contact an expert to come and help, you'll need to find a suitably qualified specialist... See a guide here

Alternatively click here to visit a BAFE registered company for more information

If your business or organisation is relatively small and you think your potential risks aren’t complex, it is possible to do it yourself. You can find a guide to help you understand what’s required here