Fire safety legislation and the law

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 – and your responsibilities

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 is the biggest single reform of fire safety laws in over 30 years. It came into force on 1 October 2006, and consolidated existing fire safety laws which were scattered across more than 70 pieces of legislation.

It places the responsibility for fire safety on the employer or responsible person for a building or premises. Under the fire safety legislation, the responsible person for each premises must:

  • Carry out an assessment of the risks of fire
  • Take steps to reduce or remove the risk
  • Tell staff or their representatives about the risks you've identified
  • Put in place, and maintain, appropriate fire safety measures
  • Plan for an emergency
  • Provide staff information, fire safety instruction and training.

Does the order apply to my premises?

The order applies to nearly every type of building and structure. The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government's guide to making your premises safe from fire provides simple and practical advice to people responsible for fire safety in small and medium sized businesses. It can be downloaded in English, Welsh, Chinese, Turkish, Urdu and Gujarati.

More information about fire safety in the workplace is available in the Enforcement section.

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