Firestopping Contractors London
Fire Safety Guide #4
Fire Risk Assessments and Fire Compartmentation Surveys
This fire safety technical guide discusses the statutory requirements for the Fire Risk Assessments and Fire Compartmentation Surveys in various types of buildings.

Fire Risk Assessment and Fire Compartmentation Inspection

Passive fire protection is an important consideration for an effective fire strategy of any building, mostly to contain the spread of fire and smoke in order to allow ample time to allow all occupants of the premises to be safely evacuated. The right implementation of the passive fire protection installations also allows for mitigations strategies such as stay put, and complete, staggered or incremental horizontal evacuation to be efficiently enforced. During the construction phase, fire stopping measures form an integral component of structural fire safety required to achieve adequate protection of life and property. Fire doors, compartment work and fire stopping are main areas of passive fire protection, both of which can be tested through a compartment inspection and a Fire Risk Assessment (FRA).

Often enough, contractors visit a site to repair or fix a door that has been classified as non-compliant by a Fire Risk Assessment carried out by the 'responsible individual' of the building, only to find that remediating that one door would not make much difference. A standard Fire Risk Assessment does not generally thoroughly analyse each aspect of fire safety, but rather a sample of them, suggesting an issue that may or may not be systemic in a facility. It is also evident that the majority of the structure comes under the same banner when observing the building through knowledgeable eyes - and that's where a compartment inspection or survey could be useful in knowing your risks.

Understanding a Fire Risk Assessment

A Fire Risk Assessment is a method involving the systematic assessment of a building or premises for the deciding factors such as the fire hazard, the probability of a fire and the consequences if one were to occur. The technical guidance for Fire Risk Assessments in the UK are summarised in a document PAS 79:2000 which is produced by the British Standards Institution. The revised and updated PAS 79:2000 gives recommendations and corresponding examples of documentation for undertaking and recording the significant findings of fire risk assessments in non-domestic premises and parts of non-domestic premises for which fire risk assessments are required by legislation. PAS 79-1:2020 gives recommendations on how to carry out fire risk assessments that will protect the occupants of non-domestic premises, e.g. employees, contractors, visitors and members of the public, while the new PAS 79-2:2020 gives recommendations for domestic premises. Under these guidelines, both qualitative and quantitative risk evaluation approaches can be used.
The latest specifications are a modification of the initial standard and are written in two sections that are available for download from the British Standards Institution (

The aim of the evaluation is to keep both people and buildings secure by identifying possible risk factors and restricting them. The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 dictates that every non-domestic premises always have an up-to-date fire risk assessment, including steps to minimise or eliminate the risk of fire, and recognise people at risk, which implies that the integrity of the building is impaired in any way, at least annually. It is not enough to merely carry out the FRA - you should act on its outcomes.

Buildings must have a periodic fire risk assessment, containing 5 main measures, by statute.
1. Identify people at risk.
2. Identify the fire hazards.
3. Evaluate, remove or reduce the risks.
4. Record your findings, prepare an emergency plan and provide training.
5. Review and update the fire risk assessment regularly.

ALERON work with a range of outstanding Fire Risk assessors who are fully certified, qualified and experienced in this type of surveys and have been in the fire protection industry for many years. Good examples of fire risk evaluations offer a clearer view of the protection of their buildings to contractors, consumers and building owners. Our specialist teams are able to consider more effectively how to make buildings fire-safe by providing the additional knowledge given by the Fire Risk assessors on the practicalities, such as technical complexity, implementation costs and timelines.

Fire Risk Assessment – Don't Do It Yourself

The law specifies that the Fire Risk Assessments have to be performed by a 'competent person' and provides a definition in that regard. In case the 'responsible person' of the building does not have a formal fire safety training, apart from the aid of standard guidelines for fire safety risk assessment, this may in some situations lead to inadequate and often hazardous fire risk assessments.
In England, according to the government website, you are liable for fire safety in business or other non-domestic buildings if you are:
· an employer
· the owner
· the landlord
· an occupier
· anyone else with control of the premises, for example a facilities manager, building manager, managing agent or risk assessor

If there's more than one responsible person, you have to work together to meet your responsibilities.
Many organisations and individuals assume that they satisfy their legal responsibilities under the law in the case of a fire if they meet the legal criteria of making an annual Fire Risk Assessment. Unfortunately, that isn't the case. A Fire Risk Assessment just offers you a thumbnail view of your property; it tests the building's sample areas, from which a larger inspection may usually be recommended.

A Fire Risk Assessment is the initial step to fire safety compliance, and it is a perfect way to recognise problems, easily apply a risk rating and a timeline in which a problem should be handled. However, what comes after this is either ample information for instant evaluation or a complete compartmentation and/or door survey follow-up for established PFP concerns.
Once fire-safety concerns are remedied, this valuable work is backed up by a comprehensive maintenance programme for onward protection of the building.

Your Journey to Fire Safety

Therefore, a Fire Risk Assessment is a legal requirement, whereas a survey or inspection is not. Your premises, however, must comply with the law, and one of the only ways to do that is to invest in a more granular inspection of the fire risk. The path to complete compliance begins by compiling a Fire Risk Assessment by an independent and skilled individual/company and we recommend appointing a reputable 3rd party certified contractor to perform the work reported in your Fire Risk Assessment.


Independent Fire Risk Assessments
ALERON have independent team of professionally trained and qualified fire risk assessors, operating UK-wide.

Fire door and compartmentation surveys
ALERON provide a comprehensive examination and report of your existing fire doors and building compartmentation.

Fire stopping
ALERON installs fire-stopping to breaches, returning compartments to the required levels of protection that prevent the spread of fire, smoke and toxic gases throughout the building.

Fire door repair and installation
ALERON specify, supply and install premium quality fire resistant doors and partitions, meeting British and European standards and achieving fire resistances from 20 to 120 minutes.

Planned Maintenance and Compliance
ALERON offer regular inspection and maintenance programmes to ensure full building fire safety compliance.

ALERON has over 14 years of Experience
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