This reminded our company of some fire marshal training in London we carried out for a large company in the City. At this fire marshal course our host stated that she had put in place:
Fire marshals (for office hours)
Deputy fire marshals (in case of absence of regular fire marshals)
Assistant deputy fire marshals (When the fire marshal was holiday or sick and the deputy fire marshal was not in the area when the fire alarm sounded)
Fire marshals (for outside normal hours)
Deputy marshals (in case of absence of an out of hours fire marshal)
Was this a bit excessive? The Fire Safety Order 2005 requires a building manager (responsible person) to have an evacuation procedure in the event of a fire in the building and sufficient suitable qualified staff to implement the fire evacuation procedure. It also requires an organisation to consider those at additional risk – ie Persons working early or late, persons working on their own, those with disabilities etc.
What’s the difference between a fire warden and a fire marshal?
How often should fire wardens be trained?
Should we carry out a roll call or sweep the building?
…and then an unusual question…
Should fire wardens act as evacuation buddies?
Regular readers of this blog will know the answers to the early questions and if you are a new reader go to our website Fire Training London or City Fire Training to find out the answers, but the last question we will answer here.
The Fire Safety Order requires a responsible person of a building or premises to have arrangements to evacuate persons from a building in the event of an emergency and sufficient suitably trained persons to assist with the evacuation. Government guidance notes detail arrangements for fire wardens and fire marshals and many fire training companies will offer advice on how they will assist with the fire evacuation. Further guidance (Means of escape for disabled people) talks about the need for Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans for disabled staff and appointing and training evacuation buddies. The guide mentions meeting a disabled person at the work station (ie desk evacuation) or at a prearranged point (ie a refuge). This would then strongly suggest that fire wardens should not act as evacuation buddies as both need to act quickly as soon as the fire alarm sounds.