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The fire safety audit

A fire safety audit is, as its title implies, an inspection that uses the principles of audit as its base, but not as its sole methodology. The process of auditing a premises, assessing risks and making enforcement decisions, will embody the principles, expectations and methodology of the EMM which will allow inspectors to make consistent and fair enforcement decisions based on clear guidelines, which will be robust if challenged, and auditable when required.

The FSO is founded upon the unequivocal responsibility of the responsible person to assess and mitigate the risk to those relevant persons who could be affected by fire. It is not appropriate for the fire and rescue authority to provide a prescriptive solution as the sole means of addressing deficiencies, except where communications have broken down and formal methods are necessary.

Any enforcement action taken must be first verified against the EMM, it must be detailed enough for the responsible person to act upon and it must make the required objective clear.

In multi-occupied buildings, responsible persons have a responsibility to co-operate and coordinate with each other to ensure that adequate fire safety measures are in place. It is not acceptable for an individual responsible person in multi-occupied buildings to simply tolerate inadequacies in the common parts of the building on the basis that a third party has principal control.