Fire safety in business premises

The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order (RRO) 2005 became law on 1 October 2006.   

You are probably the responsible person, as defined by the act, for fire safety in business or other non-domestic premises, if you are:

  • Responsible for business premises
  • An employer or self-employed with business premises
  • A charity, voluntary organisation or a contractor with a degree of control over any premises

Visit GOV.UK for further information on fire safety in the workplace

How do I meet the order?

If you are the responsible person, you must make sure you carry out a fire risk assessment although you can pass this task to some other competent person. However, you will still be responsible in law for meeting the order.

Visit GOV.UK and download A short guide to making your premises safe from fire.

You can also find detailed fire risk assessment guidance specific to your type of premises.

Enforcing the order

Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service is the main delegated enforcing authority for the (RRO) in non-domestic premises in the county of Norfolk.  

Our key objective is to reduce risk to all people in Norfolk from fire and its effects. To achieve this our enforcement policy is to audit premises identified as being most at risk. Our enforcement policy also includes an audit of premises following a fire.

Where breaches of the order occur, Norfolk Fire and Rescue Service will provide practical advice or, where the risk is serious, formal notices. Except in the most serious cases, the fire authority will work in partnership with the responsible person in order to achieve a satisfactory level of fire safety.

Where there is a very serious life risk, the fire authority is able to issue a notice preventing the premises being used for certain things, such as sleeping, or prohibiting all or part of the premises being used at all.

In all cases there will be a right of appeal, both informally and formally. An informal appeal, normally to a more experienced fire safety manager, can sometimes identify a different method of complying with the order. If this is unsuccessful, you can appeal formally to a Magistrate. There will also be the opportunity to agree to go to an informal tribunal to agree a remedy where a notice relates to technical issues.