Fire Safety Introduction – Fire Calls:

The table below shows the number of calls/category mobilised by the N Ireland Fire & Rescue Service from 2010 and reflect the introduction of the Fire Safety Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010. The number of calls mobilised does not reflect the total number of calls received ie if a call is received and it is established that it is a false alarm the call will be logged but an appliance may not be mobilised.

I have included this table to show that the category of calls for “primary” and “secondary” fires are not necessarily to occupied premises that fall within the scope of current Fire Safety Regulations and that other relevant legislation exists that places a legal requirement on a responsible person to ensure adequate fire safety measures are taken. Other fire safety measures includes the requirement to undertake fire safety training.

The false alarm categories have been included because the NIFRS have introduced procedures to prevent and reduce the numbers of false alarms which in turn places additional responsibilities on the relevant person to ensure that all alarms are investigated to determine if they are a false alarm and that information is passed to the NIFRS. The additional responsibilities imposed require specific training for the relevant persons whose duties include searching for the cause of alarm.

Category 2010/2011 2011/2012 2012/2013 2013/2014 2014/2015
Primary (Major Fire) 3618 3289 3063 3049 3138
Secondary Fire 10968 8365 5266 5802 4864
False Alarm due to Apparatus 8018 7846 8265 7699 7641
False Alarm with Good Intent 2930 2616 2254 2288 2091
False Alarm Malicious 819 770 524 488 442
Chimney Fires 1621 1465 1868 1514 1225

Fire Categories

What is Fire?

Combustion is a chemical reaction in which heat and light are evolved. For combustion to occur oxygen, fuel, and heat must be present and combined in the right concentration.

The required concentration of oxygen/fuel mixture being the flammable range.

The required degree of heat being the ignition temperature;

  • Flash Point
  • Fire Point
  • Spontaneous Ignition Temperature.

Heat, fuel and oxygen are frequently referred to as the “fire triangle.”

The important thing to remember is: take any of these three things away, and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished.

On ignition a fourth element is created this is an “exothermic chain reaction”.  This is referred to as a “fire tetrahedron.”

The important thing to remember is: take away the heat, fuel or oxygen and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished. Restrict or prevent the rate of chemical reaction then the fire will prevented from developing or will be extinguished.

What is a Primary Fire?

Primary Fires

  • Buildings fit for occupation (i.e. not wholly derelict)
  • Buildings under construction.
  • Mobile Homes
  • Caravans, trailers etc.
  • Vehicles and other methods of transport (not derelict unless associated with business e.g. scrap metal).
  • Outdoor storage (including materials for recycling),
  • Plant and machinery.
  • Agricultural and forestry premises and property.
  • Other outdoor structures including post-boxes, tunnels, bridges, etc.
What is a Secondary Fire?

Secondary Fires

  • Single derelict buildings.
  • Grassland etc., including heath, hedges, railway embankments and single trees.
  • Intentional straw or stubble burning.
  • Outdoor structures, including: lamp-posts, traffic signs and other road furniture, private outdoor furniture, playground furniture, scaffolding, signs and hoarding etc.
  • Refuse and refuse containers.
  • Derelict vehicles (a vehicle without a registered keeper).
False Alarms - Action to take.

Action to Take

When the fire alarm sounds, everyone in the building should immediately follow the fire action plan.

A trained member of staff may then find out if there is a fire (you should have arrangements in place so that you will know quickly whether an alarm is genuine or false).  This would be a Fire Warden.

If it is a false alarm, tell the fire and rescue service why it is a false alarm and be prepared to show them the cause. This will help them to deal with the situation in the shortest possible time.

The above advice comes from the following publication which is available on the NI Fire & Rescue Service website.

A guide to reducing the number of false alarms from fire-detection and fire-alarm systems

Link to Publication.

Fire Legislation & Guidance:

Fire and Rescue Services (Northern Ireland) Order 2006

The relevant articles are:

Article 25 (2)(b) Duties of employers to employees.

Each employer shall ⎯  (b) take in relation to the workplace such of the fire safety measures as are necessary to enable him to comply with the duty imposed.  This would include giving appropriate instructions to employees. Fire Awareness.

Article 51 (1)(f) Fire Safety Measure – Staff Training

By taking measures in relation to the arrangements for action to be taken in the event of fire in relevant premises (including, in particular, measures for the instruction and training of employees and for mitigation of the effects of fire).

Link to Order
Fire Safety Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010

The relevant Regulations are:

Regulation 12(b) Nominate and train competent persons.

The person with duties under Article 25 or 26 shall, where necessary—  nominate competent persons to implement those measures and ensure that the number of such persons, their training and the equipment available to them are adequate, taking into account the size of, and the specific hazards involved in, the relevant premises concerned.

Regulation 20 Training

An employer with duties under Article 25 shall ensure that his employees are provided with adequate fire safety training

  1. at the time when they are first employed; and
  2. on their being exposed to new or increased risks because of
    1. their being transferred or given a change of responsibilities within the employer’s undertaking; or
    2. the introduction of new work equipment into, or a change respecting work equipment already in use within, the employer’s undertaking; or
    3. the introduction of new technology into the employer’s undertaking; or
    4. the introduction of a new system of work into, or a change respecting a system of work already in use within, the employer’s undertaking.

The training shall include sufficient instruction and training on the appropriate precautions and actions to be taken by the employee in order to safeguard himself and other relevant persons on the premises;

An employer shall, in entrusting tasks to employees, take into account their capabilities as regards health and safety, so far as they relate to fire.

Link to Regulations
Does the legislation apply to your premises?

The above legislation relates to:

  • Almost all premises which are not private dwellings:
  • Offices and shops;
  • Premises that provide care, including care homes and hospitals;
  • Pubs, clubs and restaurants;
  • Places of worship;
  • Educational establishments including schools;
  • Theatres and cinemas;
  • Sports centres and other community premises;
  • Hotels and hostels;
  • Guest houses and B&B accommodation;
  • Houses in multiple occupation;
  • Factories and warehouses;
  • Tents and marquees;
What are your Legal Requirements.

Your are required to:

  • Carry out a fire risk assessment for the premises over which you have control;
  • Identify the fire hazards and risks associated with the premises, materials/substances, activities etc;
  • Identify the people, or groups of people at risk and anyone who may be especially at risk; (and where they are at risk ie vehicle drivers)
  • Remove and reduce the risks as far as reasonably possible;
  • Put in place general fire precautions to deal with any remaining risks;
  • Implement additional preventative and protective measures if flammable or explosive substances are used or stored on the premises;
  • Develop and implement appropriate emergency procedures in the event of fire;
  • If you have five or more employees, or require a licence or registration, you must record the significant findings of the risk assessment and any actions you have taken to remove/reduce the risk;
  • Review the risk assessment periodically or after significant changes in the workplace.
  • Provide Fire Safety Training for all staff.
Fire Safety Panel showing location of fire alarm.

Other Fire related Legislation.

Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (NI) Order 2016

Fire detection and fire-fighting 31. Correct use of fire-fighting equipment.

Each person at work on a construction site shall, so far as is reasonably practicable, be instructed in the correct use of fire-fighting equipment which it may be necessary for the person to use. 

Link to Order
Fire Safety in Construction HSG 168

Para 239 Competent in the use of fire-fighting equipment.

It is important that everyone knows how to use the fire-fighting equipment. All fire-fighting equipment should have clear operating instructions with it. Those carrying out higher risk activities, such as hot work, need to be competent in the use of the fire-fighting equipment provided and training will normally be required to achieve this.

Para 265 Training for Site Fire Wardens

All emergency plans need to be clear, unambiguous and known to all who are on the site.

  • Who will be in charge of the situation and what will be their role?
  • What information and/or training will that person need to carry out those functions?
  • Fire wardens may need to be appointed to assist the person in charge.

Para 267 On larger sites or higher fire risk sites, the appointment of fire wardens (or marshals) may be appropriate to:

  • check that the site’s fire precaution rules are observed, and that the GFPs remain adequate, available and in good order; and
  • liaise with the fire service if there is a fire and provide information on access, people trapped and any special hazards etc.

Para 268 It is important that when such people are appointed as Fire Wardens they are trained and given the necessary authority to carry out their tasks.

Link to HSG 168
International Carriage of Dangerous Goods by Road ADR

Para 8.2.2.3.8 Trained vehicle crew shall conduct practical exercises in the operation and use of first aid firefighting appliances and what to do in the event of an incident.

Para 8.3.2 Members of vehicle crew shall know how to operate and use firefighting appliances.

Notes.

The training referred to is initial training conducted as part of ADR Course.

We offer refresher training under realistic conditions in the operation and use of fire extinguishers and fire blankets.

Security Industry

Specification for Learning and Qualifications for Common Security Industry Knowledge

Session 3 ;  Fire Safety Awareness Aim:

  • Describe basic fire prevention measures
  • List the three elements that must be present for fire to exist
  • Identify the classifications of fire
  • Describe the different types of fire extinguishers and their uses
  • State other types of fire fighting equipment
  • Explain the actions to be taken upon discovering a fire
  • State the importance of understanding fire control panels
  • Describe the importance of understanding fire evacuation procedures
  • Describe the role and responsibilities of a fire marshal

Notes.

The session shown is a theoretical session with no requirement for the practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.

We provide realistic training in the operation anduse of fire extinguishers and fire blankets.

Sectors we work in.

We can tailor all of the training courses we deliver for the following sectors:

  • Offices & Shops
  • Pubs, Clubs & Restaurants
  • Factories, Workshops & Garages
  • Wharehousing & Storage
  • Hotels, Hostels & Boarding Houses
  • Residential Care & Nursing Homes
  • Playgroups & Nurseries
  • Leisure Centres
  • Transport
  • Security
  • Clubs, Groups, Societies & Associations
  • Construction Sites
  • Utility Contractors

If I have missed you – apologies.

Fire Awareness Training.

Fire Awareness Training  –  Introduction.

Employees at work are required to take reasonable care of themselves and others with respect to harm from fire and to co-operate with their employer.  To effectively do this they need to be made aware through adequate instruction, information and supervision in what is required through adequate fire safety training.

It is a legal requirement that fire safety training be given to all members of staff on induction and periodically refreshed. The fire safety training required to satisfy the legal requirement is basic level fire awareness training.

To be effective Fire Awareness training should be specific to the workplace and may require the need to include the practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.

Specific training should be tailored or designed in accordance with your companies Fire Policy, Fire Risk Assessment, Fire Evacuation Strategy, Fire Routine and Fire Safety Systems.

Fire Awareness - Questions.

Why are you looking for Fire Awareness Training.

Are you looking for fire awareness training due to a recommendation from a fire risk assessment or some other requirement?  

If so does the recommendation or requirement stipulate that the training be specific or generic.    

  • “In House” training should be specific.  
  • External training provider is normally generic.
  • External training provider can be specific.
  • On Line training is generic.

Generic might be suitable but is it sufficient?

Specific should always be suitable and sufficient  –  the legal requirement.

Who is going to deliver your Fire Awareness Training.

Who is going to deliver your required fire awareness training?

Fire Awareness training can be delivered by an external training provider or “In House” by the company themselves or “On Line”.

There is no legal requirement to have an outside trainer deliver fire awareness training.

Provided there is enough “In House” competence then that competent person can legally provide this training.  A competent person should be a company Fire Warden.

Current health and safety advice HSG65 would recommend the use of “In House” staff.

I would recommend the use of “In House” staff.

Content of Fire Awareness Training?

An example of the content of fire awareness training is shown on the fire awareness page.

The content shown would be more or less the same content delivered by every training provider that provides fire awareness training.

Not all of this content may apply to your premises or where it does apply the question should be can Jackie Barrett or other training provider specifically cover it to meet your needs, for example:

What do you want your employees to do if they discover a fire at your premises?
The training content would state:

  1. Leave the building by the safest nearest route.
    • Unless the training is being delivered at your premises, I do not know your escape routes and for the individual concerned I do not know their nearest or any alternate escape route. You will therefore have to allocate additional time and resources to adequately cover these.
  2. Go to the assembly or muster point.
    • I do not know the location of your muster point or what your specific procedures are that you have drawn up to be put in place to cover the management of the muster point. Once again the allocation of additional time and resources.

If you go through the entire contents you will find the same rings true for every item where you end up allocating additional time and resources.

Do you need practical operation and use of extinguishers?

Not all employees need to be trained in the practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.

Relevant fire extinguisher training is given to all employees trained to basic Fire Awareness level.

This is basic level training which does not include practical operation and use and covers:

  • The classes of fire, 
  • The methods of fire extinction,
  • A description of the types of extinguishers
  • The classes of fire each extinguisher can safely be used on
  • The hazards associated with each type of extinguisher
  • The safety measures to be employed
  • The information contained on the body of the extinguisher
  • The advice offered on standard fire safety notices;
    “only use if safe to do so”

See Fire Extinguisher Training page for fuller details.

Does Fire Awareness Training need to be certified?

“In House” training does not need to be certified but does need to be recorded.  It may need to be certified to satisfy other requirements such as tender applications, insurance ISO requirements, etc. These other requirements may require third party certification.

“On Line” training is certified probably stating that the person has successfully passed a written assessment.  This may satisfy other and third party certification requirements.

External providers will provide training certificates stating “attended” or “successfully completed” or “successfully passed” depending on the nature of the course.  We provide certificates stating that the person successfully passed the course with the details of the course clearly itemised on the back page.  Certificate is valid for 3 years.

In some instances it may be required that the training is approved or accredited with recognised bodies or organisations such as IFE, CIEH, City & Guilds, etc.

We do not provide approved or accredited training courses for any of the above, we provide our higher quality to our standard.

Fire Awareness Course Add-ons

Add-ons that may be included in Fire Awareness Courses are:

  • Home Fire Safety
  • Carbon Monoxide safety
  • Vehicle Fires

Included free of charge.

Please contact me for details.

Fire Warden Training.

Fire Warden Training  –  Introduction.

Depending on the size of the business employers should nominate one or more competent persons to assist them to comply with their fire safety duties. These employees would be Fire Wardens, Fire Marshals or whatever title is given to them. The duties required are numerous and once again depend on the size and layout of premises, the numbers of persons employed or on the premises and the requirements for testing fire safety equipment or systems.

When selecting persons to act as fire wardens the employer is required to take into account their capabilities as regards health and safety with respect to fire. Capabilities are qualities that can be developed through training and assessment. More so than Fire Awareness Training specific training for Fire Wardens should be tailored or designed to meet their needs in accordance with your companies Fire Policy, Fire Risk Assessment, Fire Evacuation Strategy, Fire Routine, Fire Safety Systems and the duties required to be performed by fire wardens.

Fire Warden training is enhanced level fire safety training which to be effective should be specific to the workplace and should require the need to include the practical operation and use of fire extinguishers for each Fire Warden.

Enhanced level training over that covered in fire awareness training is necessary due to the duties a fire warden accepts responsibility for.

The level of enhanced training necessary can be identified by comparing the content of fire awareness and fire warden training detailed on their respective pages.

Fire Warden - Questions.

Do you need to do Fire Awareness before Fire Warden?

Do you need to complete fire awareness training before fire warden training?  The answer in no.  

The contents of Fire Warden training will include all of the contents of fire awareness training but will be covered in greater detail.

How many Fire Wardens do you need?

Without seeing your business I cannot answer.  This depends on a number of factors:

  • Number of staff
  • Number of floors
  • Working Shifts
  • Number of other visitors, customers, patients, etc
  • State of occupants, etc

Without getting to see or understand your business no external training provider can be 100% specific with their training content.

“In House” training designed and delivered by competent “In House” staff should be specific to to your business and its occupants.

“On Line” training may not be deemed appropriate.

Who is going to deliver your Fire Warden Training?

Fire Warden training can be delivered by an external training provider or “In House” by the company themselves or “On Line”.

There is no legal requirement to have an outside trainer deliver fire warden training.

Provided there is enough “In House” competence then that competent person can legally provide this training.  A competent person should be at least a company Fire Warden.  Additional recommended qualifications might include NEBOSH Fire or General Cert.

Current health and safety advice HSG65 would recommend the use of “In House” staff.

I would recommend the use of competent, confident”In House” staff.  They know your business, your premises, your staff, their colleagues.

Content of Fire Warden Training?

An example of the generic content of a fire warden training course is shown on the fire warden page.

This content would be more or less the same for every training provider that delivers fire warden training. Not all of this content may apply to your premises or where it does apply the question should be can Jackie Barrett or any other training provider specifically cover it to meet your needs and if the training takes place “off site” will the training be relevant to your business?

We prefer to meet and get detailed relevant information so that we can design and deliver a suitable and sufficient training course.

Do you need practical operation and use of extinguishers?

Not all employees need to be trained in the practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.

Selected employees trained to enhanced Fire Warden level should cover:

  • The classes of fire,
  • The methods of fire extinction,
  • A description of the types of extinguishers
  • The classes of fire each extinguisher can safely be used on
  • The hazards associated with each type of extinguisher
  • The safety measures to be employed
  • The information contained on the body of the extinguisher
  • The advice offered on standard fire safety notices; “only use if safe to do so”
  • Guidance on what “only use if safe to do so” means.
  • Selection of the correct extinguisher to tackle a minimum of:
    • Class A fire
    • Class A fire involving live electricity
    • Class B fire
  • Observe the operation of extinguishers
  • Individual operation and use of a;
    • Water Extinguisher
    • Carbon Dioxide Extinguisher

This selected group of people would be trained in the provision, operation and use of extinguishers and that the practical training will be observed and assessed.

They would be expected to use them but once again:

“only use if safe to do so”

See Fire Extinguisher Training page for fuller details.

Does Fire Warden Training need to be certified?

“In House” training does not need to be certified but does need to be recorded.  It may need to be certified to satisfy other requirements such as tender applications, insurance ISO requirements, etc. These other requirements may require third party certification.

“On Line” training is certified probably stating that the person has successfully passed a written assessment.  This may satisfy other and third party certification requirements.

External providers will provide training certificates stating “attended” or “successfully completed” or “successfully passed” depending on the nature of the course.  We provide certificates stating that the person successfully passed the course with the details of the course clearly itemised on the back page.  Certificate is valid for 3 years.

In some instances it may be required that the training is approved or accredited with recognised bodies or organisations such as IFE, CIEH, City & Guilds, etc.

We do not provide approved or accredited training courses for any of the above, we provide our higher quality to our standard.

Are there any Fire Warden Course Add-ons?

Add-ons that may be included in Fire Warden Courses are:

  • Home Fire Safety
  • Carbon Monoxide safety
  • Vehicle Fires
  • COSHH
  • Hot Permits

These will be built in and included free of charge.

Please contact me for details.

What are the Duties of Fire Wardens?

Enhanced duties of fire wardens cover two essential elements:

1. Fire Prevention:

  • Delivering Fire Awareness Training
  • Fire Safety Inspections
  • Fire Extinguisher checks
  • Fire Alarm Tests
  • Emergency Lighting Tests
  • Testing Fire Doors
  • Means of Escape Checks
  • Conducting Fire Drills
  • Maintaining Logs and Records
  • Review & revise Fire Risk Assessments

2. Fire Reaction

  • React to fire discovery
  • Operate/use fire extinguishers
  • React to Fire Alarms
  • Silencing & Reset Alarms
  • Search for fire or false alarms
  • Search for persons missing
  • Assist persons to evacuate
  • Search to ensure premises are clear
  • Report to Muster/Assembly Point
  • Assist in investigation
  • Make reports
Fire Wardens and False Alarms?

To help prevent the transmission of false alarms to NI Fire & Rescue Service, each premises equipped with a fire alarm must designate a single named member of the premises management to supervise all matters pertaining to the fire detection and fire alarm system.

This is the “Responsible Person” who must ensure that they are aware of the responsibilities associated with the role as outlined in their company policy.  

It would be recommended that Responsible Persons would be trained Fire Wardens.

The “Responsible Person” should be aware of all aspects of the fire alarm and fire alarm monitoring system relevant to their premises and is responsible for the fire alarm performance in the premises.

When the fire alarm sounds, everyone in the building should immediately follow the company fire action plan.

A trained member of staff may then find out if there is a fire.  Someone trained to Fire Warden level.

If it is a false alarm, tell the fire and rescue service why it is a false alarm and be prepared to show them the cause. This will help them to deal with the situation in the shortest possible time.

Fire Extinguisher Training.

Fire Extinguisher Training  –  Introduction.

It is a legal requirement to have extinguishers sited and installed in premises. The type number and location is normally determined by the company that supplies and services them.

We offer fire extinguisher training either as initial training or as refresher training:

  • As part of Fire Awareness Training where we always cover the provision of fire extinguishers and if required the actual practical operation and use. 
  • As part of Fire Warden Training where we cover provision and the actual operation and use.
  • For Vehicle Fires Training where we specifically target the provision, operation and use of small portable extinguishers fitted in vehicles plus the normal range of extinguishers on trucks/tankers etc.
  • As stand alone training purely covering the types, provision and actual operation and use for any person or group of people who need or want extinguisher training.

Practical training can be conducted”on” or “off site”.

We prefer to conduct it off your site at a location selected and assessed by us, because:

Your Site:

  • Will not have a suitable and sufficient risk assessment prepared and probably no competent person to compile one in preparation for the training
  • May not be suitable because the area required for simulated LPG gas fire training rig is a minimum of 4 car parking spaces
  • May offer potential distractions with increased risk of accident
  • May not be suitable for realistic training where we cannot do carbonaceous or oil fires due to dark smoke emissions

Our selected Site:

  • Will have suitable and sufficient risk assessment and Method Statement
  • Is suitable for the realistic use of live carbonaceous fires and live oil fires
  • Is suitable for use of LPG training rig for simulated Class A and B fires involving electrical equipment
  • Is in the open away from traffic and distraction
  • Has a suitable undercover area in the event of inclement weather
  • Provides additional safety and medical cover which is immediately available.

Fire Extinguisher - Questions.

What are the legal requirements for fire extinguisher training?

Employer shall ensure that all persons who may be expected to operate and use first aid firefighting equipment have received adequate training to include:

  • training in the methods which may be adopted when using the work equipment,
  • any risks which such use may entail
  • precautions to be taken.

Employer shall ensure that all persons who may be expected to use first aid firefighting equipment have have:

  • adequate health and safety information and
  • written instructions on the use of the first aid firefighting equipment 

The information and instructions required shall include information and, where appropriate, written instructions on:

  1. the conditions in which and the methods by which the first aid firefighting equipment  may be used;
  2. foreseeable abnormal situations and the action to be taken if such a situation were to occur; and
  3. any conclusions to be drawn from experience in using the first aid firefighting equipment.
Do all employees need to be trained in extinguishers?

All employees should receive fire safety training in which information and instructions on extinguishers should be provided.

There are two main levels of fire safety training:

  1. Fire Awareness
  2. Fire Warden

For businesses to which the fire safety regulations apply:

  • all employees require Fire Awareness Training but depending on the size of the business, not all employees need to be trained in the actual practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.
  • selected employees require Fire Warden Training or enhanced fire safety training. These employees should be trained in the actual practical operation and use of fire extinguishers.
What is basic level actual practical operation and use of extinguishers?

Basic Level.

This normally involves the operation and use to discharge a Water and Carbon Dioxide Extinguishers. 

At this level I would recommend:

  • An explanation (by the trainer) of how to operate and use the extinguisher.
  • An explanation (by the trainer) of what is going to happen when the safety pin is removed and the trigger pressed.
  • An explanation (by the trainer) of how to hold and control the discharge nozzle.
  • An explanation (by the trainer) of the discharge effects:
    • Noise
    • Pressure reaction
  • A demonstration (by the trainer) of:
    • how to remove the pin 
    • how to activate the extinguisher
    • the partial discharge of the extinguisher
  • An imitation of the explanation and demonstration (by the trainee).
  • A de-brief  (by the trainer).
These two extinguishers have been selected because of their minimal impact.
What is simulated level actual practical operation and use of extinguishers?

Simulated Level.

This normally involves the operation and use to discharge a Water and Carbon Dioxide Extinguishers to extinguish simulated fires.

The use of foam and dry powder extinguishers can only be considered if the site is suitable.

Simulated fires are created using a LPG propane fuelled training rig to simulate:

  1. Waste bin fire
  2. Oil Tray fire
  3. Electric motor fire
  4. Chip pan fire

The training content and delivery would be the same as for the Basic Level but to incorporate the selection of the correct extinguisher for the simulated event.

We provide simulated training provided the site is suitable.

What is realistic level actual practical operation and use of extinguishers?

Realistic Level.

This normally involves the operation and use of selected extinguishers to to extinguish realistic fires Class A and B fires under controlled conditions.

The training content and delivery would be the same as for the Basic Level but to incorporate the selection of the correct extinguisher for the realistic scenario.

We provide realistic training solely at our site.

Who is going to deliver your Fire Extinguisher Training.

Fire Extinguisher training can be delivered by an external training provider or “In House” by the company themselves or “On Line”.

There is no legal requirement to have an outside trainer deliver fire extinguisher training.

Provided there is enough “In House” competence then that competent person can legally provide this training.  A competent person should be at least a company Fire Warden.  

Current health and safety advice HSG65 would recommend the use of “In House” staff.

I would recommend the use of competent, confident “In House” staff.   They know your business, your premises, your staff, their colleagues.

Does Fire Extinguisher Training need to be certified?

“In House” extinguisher training does not need to be certified but does need to be recorded.  It may need to be certified to satisfy other requirements such as tender applications, insurance ISO requirements, etc. These other requirements may require third party certification.

“On Line” knowledge based extinguisher training is certified probably stating that the person has successfully passed a written assessment.  This may satisfy other and third party certification requirements but may not satisfy your requirements.

External providers will provide training certificates stating “attended” or “successfully completed” or “successfully passed” depending on the nature of the course.  We provide certificates stating that the person successfully passed the course with the details of the course clearly itemised on the back page.  Certificate is valid for 3 years.

In some instances it may be required that the training is approved or accredited with recognised bodies or organisations such as IFE, CIEH, City & Guilds, etc.

We do not provide approved or accredited training courses for any of the above, we provide higher quality to our standard.

What is Fire?

Combustion is a chemical reaction in which heat and light are evolved. For combustion to occur oxygen, fuel, and heat must be present and combined in the right concentration.

The required concentration of oxygen/fuel mixture being the flammable range.

The required degree of heat being the ignition temperature;

  • Flash Point
  • Fire Point
  • Spontaneous Ignition Temperature.

Heat, fuel and oxygen are frequently referred to as the “fire triangle.”

The important thing to remember is: take any of these three things away, and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished.

On ignition a fourth element is created this is an “exothermic chain reaction”.  This is referred to as a “fire tetrahedron.”

The important thing to remember is: take away the heat, fuel or oxygen and you will not have a fire or the fire will be extinguished. Restrict or prevent the rate of chemical reaction then the fire will prevented from developing or will be extinguished.

What are the classes of fire?

All fires can be separated into 5 different classes, 

Class A – Ordinary combustible fires

The most common type of fire involving paper, wood, textiles, rubber, some plastics and other organic carbon based compounds.

Class B – Flammable liquids

Flammable liquids such as petrol, kerosene, alcohol, solvents and paints. Fires involving these give off a lot of heat and tend to spread very quickly. They also produce thick, black toxic smoke, which can make these fires difficult to fight.

Class C – Flammable gases

Flammable gases such as butane, propane and petroleum gases which have the potential for ultra fast fire development.

Class D – Metal fires

Certain metals and powdered metals such as potassium, magnesium, aluminium and sodium can burn when in contact with air and water.

Electrical Fires

Short circuits, overloaded switchboards, faulty equipment and damaged wiring can all cause electrical fires. Electrical fires are not strictly a fire class of their own, as electricity is a source of ignition as opposed to a fuel.

Class F – Cooking oil fires

Fires involving cooking oil and fats.

What does safe to tackle a fire mean?

The attached fire action notice states:

“If possible tackle the fire using the appliances provided but do not endanger yourself or others in doing so”.

This is common wording both on statutory signage and in a company fire policy or evacuation procedure.

Safe to use would mean:

  • On discovery you will be aware of the materials burning and the size and extent of the fire.
  • When you leave the discovery site to select the extinguisher close doors or windows
  • Let others know of your intention to tackle the fire.
  • Select suitable fire extinguisher for the class of fire and any associated risk ie
    • live electricity
  • Recognise that on return to the scene the fire will have increased in intensity and spread
  • There will be the production of toxic fire gases which are also flammable
  • Understand the effects of inhalation of toxic gases especially if there is an underlying medical condition.
  • Be aware of the clothes you are wearing.
  • Do not get too close.
    • Water and foam extinguishers let you stand back and direct the jet.
    • Spray extinguishers and carbon dioxide extinguishers encourage your close approach
  • Do not let the fire get between you and your escape route.
  • Use the extinguisher safely and effectively
  • Be aware of the limitations of the extinguisher
  • Be aware of any dangers associated with the extinguisher
  • Be aware that the application of the extinguishing agent might make the conditions worse
  • Consider the use of a back up extinguisher
  • If you are not having the desired effect ” Leave the premises” and report to the muster Point or Assembly Point.
When would you tackle a fire?

Fires may be tackled:

On discovery before the sounding of an alarm.

Depending on the level of heat and the fuel

  • On discovery at the sounding of an alarm.
  • At some point after an alarm has been sounded.
What is the duration of fire extinguishers?

Some typical example discharge times are.

2 Kg CO2 10 seconds  55 bar

5 Kg CO2 20 seconds

3 litre Water 10 seconds

9 litre Water 55 seconds  10.5 bar

3 litre Foam 10 seconds

9 litre Foam 40 seconds

4kg Powder 11 seconds

9kg Powder 18 seconds  15 bar

1kg Powder 7 seconds

Fire Risk Assessor Training.

Fire Risk Assessor Training  –  Introduction.

We undertake fire risk assessments and provide training and assessment services for any person wishing to complete, review or revise a Fire Risk Assessment.

The training and assessment services we provide are for Low to Medium fire risk premises.

This is a LIFE SAFETY fire risk assessment that does not address the risk to property or business continuity from fire.

A fire risk assessment is an organised and methodical look at the relevant premises, the activities carried on there and the likelihood that a fire could start and cause harm to those in and around the premises.

The aims of the fire risk assessment are:

  • To identify the fire hazards.
  • To reduce the risk of those hazards causing harm to as low as reasonably practicable.
  • To decide what physical fire precautions and management arrangements are necessary to ensure the safety of people in your premises if a fire does start.

Fire Risk Assessor - Questions.

What is the legal requirement for a fire risk assessment?

All relevant premises as defined by the Fire and Rescue Services Order are required to conduct a fire risk assessment.

Premises where five or more persons employed must have the FRA in writing and a copy must remain at the premises.

Relevant premises are “all” premises other than domestic premises and includes any place, and, in particular–

  • any installation on land;
  • any tent or movable structure; and
  • vehicles

The legal requirement is that the owner, employer or any person who has control to any extent of a relevant premises and who is responsible for fire safety shall ensure that the premises are risk assessed.

In Northern Ireland the person with this responsibility is known as the “Appropriate Person”. The Appropriate Person does not necessarily complete the fire risk assessment.

Who is going to undertake your Fire Risk Assessments?

Fire Risk assessments can be undertaken by an external consultant such as ourselves or by the company themselves.

There is no legal requirement to have an outside consultant complete the fire risk assessment. Provided there is enough “in house” competence then you can legally complete your own assessment. Regulation 17(4) of The Fire Safety Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2010 states that where there is a competent person in your employment then that competent person shall be nominated to undertake the duties in preference to a competent person not in your employment.

Competent would be defined as a person that has had sufficient training and experience or knowledge and other qualities to enable that person to complete a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risk to life from fire in the premises, and, where appropriate, to make recommendations to ensure compliance with Northern Ireland fire safety legislation.

We provide training that will provide the level of competence required.

Content of Fire Risk Assessor Training?

An example of the generic content of a fire risk assessor training course is shown on the fire risk assessor page.

This content would be more or less the same for every training provider that delivers fire risk assessor training.

Fire risk assessor training content consists of two primary elements – Knowledge element and Practical element.

Knowledge element should cover:

  • The subjective assessment of fire risk based on reliable objective evidence.
  • Understanding of the relevant statutory provisions.
  • Identify and use appropriate guidance documents.
  • Understand the behaviour of fire in compartments and buildings.
  • Recognise the effects and behaviour of people involved in fire.
  • Understand and identify means of escape and the means of protecting the means of escape.
  • Recognise the importance of fire prevention procedures.
  • Identify fire protection measures and the need for adequate maintenance.
  • State the difference between Passive and Active fire protection and give examples of each.
  • Understand the importance of good fire safety management.

Practical element should cover:

  • Completion of a fire risk assessment
  • Review and revision of fire risk assessments

For maximum benefit the practical element should be conducted under realistic conditions using standard approved templates and methodology.

For fire risk assessment purposes what are low risk premises?

Low Risk Premises might include:

  1. Small number of persons
  2. Minimal amount of combustible materials are used and stored and even in places where they are used and stored they are kept properly designated areas
  3. Rapid fire spread is unlikely
For fire risk assessment purposes what are medium risk premises?

Medium Risk Premises might include:

  • There are a lot of persons present but where the construction may contain a fire for a sufficient period of time and layout of the premises afford a quick and easy means of escape
  • There are combustible materials present but these are stored and used in areas with good fire-resisting material, and rapid fire spread is unlikely owing to adequate construction methods
For fire risk assessment purposes what are high risk premises?

High Risk Premises might include:

  • There is a high life risk ie large number of people employed or present.
  • There are large quantities of flammable or highly flammable materials processed, stored or used.
  • There is a high risk of rapid fire spread through the premises.
What risk assessment templates will be used?

Fire risk assessor training will cover the PAS79 methodology and use the following templates.

  1. NIFRS Carrying Out and Recording a Fire Risk Assessment 
  2. Short blank FRA template May be appropriate where fire safety responsibilities are minimal or where the premises are small and uncomplicated.
  3. Long blank FRA template May be appropriate in the case of more substantial premises.
  4. Fire Safety Log Book template
What are the five steps to follow for fire risk assessments?

Five steps of a fire risk assessment

1. Identify fire hazards

  • Sources of ignition
  • Sources of fuel
  • Sources of oxygen

2. Identify people at risk

  • People in and around the premises
  • People especially at risk

3. Record, plan, inform, instruct and train

  • Record significant finding and action taken
  • Prepare an emergency plan

4. Inform and instruct relevant people; co-operate and co-ordinate with others

  • Provide training

5. Review

  • Keep assessment under review
  • Revise where/when necessary

Construction Site Fire Safety Training.

Construction Site Fire Safety Training  –  Introduction.

This training course is designed around HSG168 Fire Safety in Construction.  

The contents of the course will be designed around specific site requirements using relevant content from the Fire Awareness or Fire Warden Courses.

Construction Site Fire Safety - Questions.

Content of Construction Site Fire Safety Training?

An example of the generic content of a construction site fire training course is shown on the construction site fire safety page.

This content would be more or less the same for every training provider that delivers construction site fire safety training.

Our specific training will be tailored to meet your needs.

What is the legal requirement for construction site fire safety?

The legal requirements are:

Fire safety in construction  HSG168

Step 4 Record, plan, inform, instruct and train.

Paragraph 76   Your checklist:

  • Have your staff received any fire safety training?
  • Are employees aware of specific tasks if there is a fire?
  • Are you maintaining a record of training sessions?
  • Do you carry out joint training and fire drills in multi-occupied buildings?
  • If you use or store hazardous or explosive substances have your staff received appropriate training?

The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2016

Regulation 31. Fire detection and fire-fighting

 (5) Each person at work on a construction site shall, so far as is reasonably practicable, be instructed in the correct use of fire-fighting equipment which it may be necessary for the person to use.

(6) Where a work activity may give rise to a particular risk of fire, a person shall not carry out work unless suitably instructed.

Vehicle Fires Training.

Vehicle Fires Training  –  Introduction.

This training is normally provided as an add on to either the fire awareness or fire warden training to cover:

  • Petrol/Diesel combustion
  • LPG installations
  • Fuel cells
  • Vans, cars, minibuses, buses, lorries, on-site mobile welfare units, mobile trailers, plant and machinery.
  • Fuel storage and refuelling

Vehicle Fires - Questions.

Content of Vehicle Fires Training?

An example of the generic content of a vehicle fire safety training course is shown on the vehicle fire safety page.

Content to cover:

  • Vehicle systems and safety
  • What to do in event of fire
  • Transportation, storage of flammable substances
  • Vehicle extinguishers and extinguishing techniques
What are the extinguisher requirements in vehicles?

Guidance is given in:

HSE document Requirement for main fire extinguishers.

Group Fire Safety Training.

Group Fire Safety Training  –  Introduction.

This training course is aimed at all groups, clubs, organisations or societies that are seeking fire safety training.

The courses will be designed to be specific to the group.

Group Fire Safety - Questions.

Content of Group Fire Safety Training?

An example of the generic content of a group fire training course is shown on the group fire training page.

This content would be more or less the same as for general fire awareness or fire warden training.

Contact us.