Fire Safety Policy

Fire Safety Policy

  1. Statement
  2. Aims
  3. Related policies, legislation and guidance
  4. Roles and responsibilities
  5. Procedure
  6. Review

Appendix A: Fire safety key staff

1. Statement
Ashbourne attaches the utmost importance to health and safety matters at the College and has formulated this Fire Safety Policy to be compliant with its commitment and legal obligations. The policy and procedures are designed to safeguard the Ashbourne community, including visitors, and any other persons who may be affected by the conduct of the College’s business, from death or injury, in the event of a fire or associated explosion, under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and other relevant regulations.This includes the provision of a safe workplace, where fire safety risks are minimised, and are subject to annual and independent verification.

This policy applies throughout all of the College’s premises.

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2. Aims
The procedures and risk assessments at the College are designed to help all members of the community respond calmly and effectively in the event of a fire at the College. This involves: 

  • Compliance with all current legislation and guidance and liaising with the Fire and Rescue Service (FRS) as appropriate.
  • Annual risk assessments, training and retraining and constant oversight to prevent the incidence of fire.
  • Minimising the impact on life and property in the event of fire by ensuring:
    • the adequacy of the College’s means of escape including emergency lighting;
    • the appropriate instruction, training and retraining, where appropriate, for all persons, including contractors, on the action to be taken in the event of fire;
    • the provision and maintenance of firefighting equipment;
    • termly fire evacuation drills.
  • Communicating with staff and contractors updates for fire prevention, to seek their cooperation, remind them of their duties and encourage feedback to improve the College’s fire prevention capabilities.

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3. Related policies, legislation and guidance
3.1. Related policies

3.2 Legislation and guidance

  • Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 2002
  • Gas Safety (Installation and Use) Regulations 1998
  • Health and Safety at Work Act 1974
  • Management of Health and Safety at Work Regulations 1992
  • Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005
  • Reporting of Injuries, Diseases and Dangerous Occurrences Regulations (RIDDOR) 2013

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4. Roles and responsibilities
4.1 The Principal
The Principal ensures that appropriate procedures and audit protocols are in place and reviewed. These responsibilities are managed by the Facilities Manager. The Facilities Manager and Deputy Facilities Manager ensure that all procedures are implemented and adhered to on a sustainable basis in their areas of strategic responsibility. This delegation would generally include both premises and administration managers.

4.2 The Facilities Manager responsibilities
4.2.1 The Facilities Manager is responsible for ensuring that the College complies with all relevant legislation and guidance.

4.2.2 Preparing and renewing fire risk assessments for all premises each year and ensuring that action plans resulting from these risk assessments are implemented. These risk assessments ensure, for example, that not only is the appropriate firefighting equipment in place but also that fire signage, door closers and emergency lighting are in proper order.

There are special risk assessments for the College labs and art rooms to ensure the proper storage of combustible materials.

4.2.3 Ensuring that all members of the Ashbourne community, employees, visitors, contractors are aware of the fire safety procedures and comply with the arrangements made to control risk from fire hazards.

4.2.4 Ensuring that inspections are carried out on a daily, weekly, termly and yearly basis and that various control measures are in place to ensure their continued effectiveness. These inspections include:

  • Ensuring that the fire extinguishers are serviced every year by an external company.
  • Ensuring that the fire alarm system and detection is checked on a six-monthly basis by Force Fire at Old Court Place and Thameside Fire at Young Street and certificates are stored securely on the College’s database system.
  • Ensuring that the emergency lights are checked once a month for a one hour test and every six months for a three hour test.
  • Carrying out a daily inspection of   the fire escape routes, fire extinguishers, fire panel, fire signage and emergency lights.
  • Ensuring that the Fire Safety Team carry out regular checks throughout the day to ensure corridors and fire exits are kept clear and monitor fire fighting equipment.

4.2.5 Ensuring that termly fire evacuation drills are arranged for all of the College premises. These are implemented by the Head of Facilities and operations staff who are trained fire marshals.

4.2.6 Ensuring that the Facilities Manager and deputies have advanced training updated annually and that fire marshals have training which is updated at least every three years. All new staff and students must be inducted with basic training for fire safety to include: the location of the fire points, the fire exits and basic procedure in the event of a fire.

4.2.7 It is the Facilities Manager’s responsibility to ensure that all members of the Ashbourne community understand that they are expected to take care with all health and safety issues, including fire safety, and report any concerns they might have to the Head of Facilities or one of the Senior Leadership Team. Any employees or students who undermine, or who are careless with, the proper provision of fire safety may expect to face disciplinary proceedings.

4.2.8 Ensure premises are properly assessed for fire safety where events take place out of hours or at external venues, for example during parents’ evening, at external exams or the College Revue.

4.2.9. Ensuring that all combustible materials are properly stored with special regard to the College laboratories, art facilities and building and cleaning materials.

4.3 The College Administrators are responsible for the following:
4.3.1 Ensure that the fire marshal certificates have not expired and the certificates are kept up to date.

4.3.2 Implementing a fire marshal system is in place at the reception of all premises.

4.3.3 Ensure the fire alarm system is tested weekly at set times to verify the system is properly operational and clearly audible. This is recorded in fire log books which are stored by the Facilities Team.

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5. Procedure in the event of a fire
Members of the Ashbourne community are not expected to fight fires. They must act in accordance with the posted fire safety procedures and evacuate the premises immediately. 

  1. The alarm will be raised immediately by whoever discovers the fire and emergency services contacted. Evacuation procedures will also begin immediately.
  2. Fire fighting equipment, such as extinguishers and blankets, may only be used by staff who are trained in how to operate them and are confident they can use them without putting themselves or others at risk.
  3. Staff and students will congregate at the assembly points, which are located: OCP- new flats opposite main entrance; Young Street – outside the Greyhound pub.
  4. Class teachers will take a register of students and check against the attendance register of that day, where possible.
  5. A member of the Senior Leadership Team will take a register of all staff.
  6. Staff and students will remain outside the building until the emergency services say it is safe to re-enter.

5.1 Procedure following a fire
The Facilities Manager will keep a record of any accidents that result in a reportable injury or dangerous occurrence as defined in the RIDDOR 2013 legislation. They will report these to the Health and Safety Executive as soon as is reasonably practicable and in any event within 10 days of the incident.

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6. Review
This policy, and any fire safety concerns or instances that occur, will be reviewed during the annual health and safety meeting, alongside risk assessments and procedures for evacuation, lockdown or intruders, and relevant updates and measures implemented.

Authorised by The Principal
Date September 2023
Effective date of the policy September 2023
Circulation Teaching staff / all staff / parents / students on request
Review date September 2024

Appendix A: Fire safety key staff

Old Court Place

  1. Fabio Carpene – Lead Marshal
  2. Marcus Loudon
  3. Aida Sicheva
  4. Zilan Zhou

Young Street

  1. Jerome Carasco
  2. Sharan Kandola-Singh – Lead Marshal
  3. Margaret Rennie
  4. Amy Youngman

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