Fire safety policy

What's a fire safety policy and when do you need it?

All businesses should have a fire safety policy in place and appoint the right individuals for specific roles. It’s especially important to have a responsible person who can delegate responsibility to the fire marshall(s).

As an employer, you're responsible for those that are on your site (for example, you may have a sign-in system for people visiting you).

You should be doing all you can to make sure those who are on your premises are safe (even if they aren’t your employees).

The steps that you take to achieve this will depend on the environment that you work in.

You do not need to give your fire safety policy contractual status in any employment (or equivalent engagement) contract that you put in place, but you should ideally reference it in that contract.

You should make clear that the staff, individuals or those contracting for you are expected to comply with the policy and that you have the right to update or revise it at your discretion and when you want to.

It’s also important to add that there are consequences for non-compliance. Non-compliance or misconduct at a high level could result in disciplinary procedures for employees.

If you are working with others, whether they are individuals or those contracting on your behalf, they'll also face consequences if they don’t comply with your fire safety measures. This will be handled under the terms of your contractual relationship with them.

Although some aspects of this policy might not seem that immediately relevant to your business, if, for example, you are a sole director with no employees and therefore no managers – this policy will need to grow with your business.

And, rather than having to keep updating it, our expert partners recommend that you maintain this drafting to cover your position and to provide you with the right guidance as you grow.