Fire Safety Procedure

Fire Safety Procedure

Summary

Routine Procedures

  1. Fire Safety Procedures are assessed and approved by the GSL in consultation with Executive Committee and Norwich School (the School).
  2. The Fire detection system is checked and tested by the School on a weekly basis.
  3. Fire fighting equipment is provided and checked on a weekly basis by the School.
  4. Fire evacuation drills are carried out once per term by each section within the Scout Group.

The Fire Assembly Point

Is located on the hard standing in front of the Field Store.  

(In the event that this is unviable then it shall be in front of the Lower Close Pavilion.)

On arrival at HQ and before a Section Meeting Starts:-

  1. Open the main door to the HQ and keep this unlocked throughout the session.
  2. Unlock and open the main gate to the Lower Close (To enable access to the Fire Assembly Point)
  3. Leader in Charge to ensure a register is taken of all young people at Flag Break.   The register should then be placed in the marked plastic tray adjacent to the Troop Notice Board, just inside the main entrance.
  4. All adults and Young Leaders should sign-in to the “Leader Register” also kept in a marked plastic tray on the wall adjacent to the Troop Notice Board.

Section 1 - Action if you discover or suspect a fire in or around the Scout Head Quarters

  1. Operate the nearest fire alarm point.  Shout at the top of your voice "Fire Fire Fire" to alert other occupants.
  1. Call the Fire and Rescue Service by dialling 999 using internal phones, or 112 from a mobile.
  1. Leave the building by the nearest exit and report to the appropriate assembly point.

MAIN FIRE ASSEMBLY POINT
In front of the Lower Close, Field Store (Garage)

If this is not viable then proceed to:

Back up Assembly Point
In front of Lower Close Sports Pavilion

  1. If you are responsible for a group ensure all young people, leaders and visitors are evacuated
  2. Do not stop to collect personal belongings.
  3. Do not allow anyone to re-enter the building until a senior leader or a fire officer gives authorisation.
  4. If time allows close all windows and doors behind you, but your first priority is to evacuate scouts and leaders.
  5. Report to the senior leader at the assembly point:
  1. with details of the fire
  2. action taken
  3. knowledge of occupants of the building who may still be in the building, or immediately name individuals and last known whereabouts of individuals not accounted for.
  1. Make yourself known to the Fire and Rescue Service on their arrival.

Note:  In the event of any suspect fire, the person discovering the fire must contact the Fire and Rescue Service.  If the alarm is not associated with a fire, the Fire and Rescue Service must be told without delay.

Section 2 - Fire Evacuation

If you discover a fire, the first thing you must do is raise the alarm and call the Fire and Rescue Service (any leader / adult helper can do this). 

Leaders should give instructions to scouts to leave the building by the nearest approved route.  Ensure you advise scouts where they are heading as they leave the building.  Close the door to all rooms and to the building.

Leaders, Assistant Leaders and Section Assistants will act as Fire Wardens.    Fire Wardens (wearing Hi-Viz Jackets, kept on the back of the Main Entrance Doors) carry out final building checks and sweeps.  Your principal job is to ensure that all pupils and staff are clear of the building.  If time allows, shut windows and pull doors together.

Leaders/Fire Wardens and scouts must not attempt to enter or re-enter an evacuated building.  Further, you should only attempt to put out the fire if you are confident that you can do so effectively and have a clear exit through which you can escape.

The assembly point, wherever the fire has occurred, for evacuated scouts and staff is the forecourt in front of the Lower Close Field Store.   If this is unviable it is in front of the Sports Pavillion on the Lower Close Field.  

As Fire Wardens arrive at the assembly point, whatever the type of evacuation, your first job is to locate and confirm with the senior Leader in attendance that you have evacuated your area.  Say, for instance, "I confirm that the “Barn” is fully evacuated".  You then immediately return to your group.

Attendance Registers

  • for Cubs, Scouts and Explorers (Attendance Forms) will be kept in a plastic tray adjacent to the Troop Notice Board inside the main entrance of the HQ.    
  • for Leaders, Assistants, Helpers, Instructors, parent helpers and Young Leaders, the register will be kept in a plastic tray adjacent to the Troop Notice Board inside the main entrance of the HQ.    

The Leader in Charge will collect the attendance registers and take them to the assembly point. 

Attendance at the assembly point will be checked to ensure all people have been accounted for.

No leader or scout may re-enter any school building during the evacuation until the all-clear instructions are given by the senior leader in attendance or the Fire and Rescue Services.

Section 3 – Organisation for Fire Safety

Group Scout Leader (GSL)

The GSL is appointed to

  • promote an active and effective health and safety culture in the Group.  This includes fire safety.
  • have executive authority within the Group in fire safety matters. 
  • take action to prevent danger when there is an immediate serious risk to life or property.

The GSL shall liaise with the School and the Fire and Rescue Services, as necessary, and maintain this manual in accordance with their recommendations and all relevant legislation.

Particular duties of the GSL are:

  • To provide training to enable Section Leaders to act as Fire Wardens to organise assistance and provide salvage advice to the Fire and Rescue Services.
  • To prepare fire safety training for all leaders and to see that it is delivered and to keep personnel records for all fire training.
  • The GSL must maintain a fire evacuation log, which is to be submitted to the SHSA termly.
  • To report to the Group Executive and School Health & Safety Committee and to provide the Committee with reports on any fires or potential fires and other fire safety matters.  The Committee will act as a forum for consultation on fire safety matters and dissemination of fire information, in consultation with any appropriate fire consultants appointed by the Group or School.
  • To nominate persons to take fire safety responsibility (Fire Wardens) for each building and to ensure that they have the necessary resources and information on fire safety matters to enable them to fulfil their duties.
  • To keep the Head Master, Trustees, Leaders and Governors informed by regular briefing of developments, concerns, training and incidents in fire safety arrangements.
  • To maintain practice evacuation records in accordance with the law.
  • Provide appropriate training for leaders and any School Staff using the building.

Executive Committee

GSL shall ensure that the arrangements in this manual are carried out.  The Executive Committee will receive briefs from the GSL at regular intervals to include developments, concerns, incidents and training.

Section Leaders

Section Leaders are responsible for

  • ensuring that the GSL’s instructions are carried out by all persons in the Group.  
  • informing the GSL when any changes to scout activities could affect fire safety, for example visits by disabled persons.
  • carrying out a routine visual check of all fire safety arrangements and reporting defects to the GSL promptly. 
  • instructing assistants on fire safety precautions and actions in the event of a fire.
  • instructing the pupils in the department/area on fire safety precautions and actions in the event of a fire.

When carrying out routine checks, this will include:

  • fire extinguishers are in place and not tampered with;
  • fire escape routes are kept clear and free of flammable materials;
  • fire doors are not wedged open and are fully self-closing or locked shut;
  • fire escape stairs are kept free of slipping or tripping hazards;
  • security against arson is maintained;
  • any evidence of smoking is reported to the GSL;
  • electrical appliances are unplugged where appropriate.

All defects are to be reported immediately to the School via the GSL.

Leaders are to make themselves available for fire training as required.

Property Services Officer (PSO)

The School’s PSO, as the Site Health & Safety Adviser (SHSA), is to assist the GSL in achieving his responsibilities and in particular that:

  • Building work complies with the fire safety requirements of the building regulations by consultation with building control and building completion certificates issued by them.
  • There are up-to-date schematic drawings of all premises showing fire safety arrangements to satisfy the needs of the Fire and Rescue Service.
  • There are adequate means of detection, alarm, escape, fire fighting (including water for the brigade), access for the brigade, emergency lighting and signs on all school premises.  These arrangements are to be inspected, maintained, upgraded and tested in accordance with the requirements of the law, the school insurers, best practice and the relevant standards, copies of which are held by the school electrician.
  • There are completed and up-to-date fire risk assessments for all school properties; these are the responsibility of the FRAC Ipswich.
  • Appropriate fire training is provided for all school staff and on-site contractors.
  • All fire records are maintained.
  • Monitor, with GSL, all fire evacuation records to ensure they are completed correctly and on time.
  • Liaise with Emergency Services, Fire Risk Assessment Consultants and Health and Safety Consultants and with the GSL as necessary.

Note: The PSO is to inform the GSL, Head Master and Bursar, as necessary, on any failure to comply.

Associated documents

The following documents are available                                      from

Fire test, inspection and maintenance records                           PSO

Fire training records                                                                 SSO

Fire logs                                                                                 PSO / SSO

Fire plans                                                                                PSO

Practice evacuation record                                                       SSO

Emergency services plan                                                         prepared by the PSO for the

                                                                                               Fire and Rescue Service

Designated premises licence                                                    Bursar

Fire risk assessments                                                              PSO

Fire safety action plan                                                              SSO

Summary of responsibilities

Audit fire arrangements                                          Consultant, as directed by PSO

Fire and Rescue Service Liaison                            GSL

Fire drills                                                              GSL/Section Leaders

Fire equipment – records of supply,                       PSO and school electrician
maintain, test upgrade

Fire precautions – inspected weekly                       Building-responsible persons

Fire reports – overview                                          GSL/Health & Safety Committee/Governor

Fire risk assessments                                           FRAC and PSO

Lettings                                                                NA

Liaison with insurer                                                Bursary

Training – records                                                 GSL

Special events                                                      Activity organiser informing PSO

Training                                                                GSL

Section 4-  Fire safety information, instruction and training

Use of fire extinguishers

The majority of teaching and administrative staff have been trained in the use of fire extinguishers.  The general principle is that people are always more important than property; though trained in extinguisher use, individuals are not to put themselves or others at unnecessary risk by fighting fires.

As groups of new staff come through, formal training on the use of extinguishers is arranged through various training agencies.

Which Extinguisher?

Different fire extinguishers are provided in the Headquarters buildings that are appropriate to the local risk. For example, a water extinguisher would not be in an area where the main fire risk would be from electrical equipment (e.g. an electrical cupboard). Therefore, in some instances more than one type of extinguisher may be required.

New leaders/instructors/assistants are told about fire safety and other emergency procedures during the Group Leaders Meetings that occur on a termly basis.

Training at more frequent intervals may be necessary where there are significant changes to fire safety arrangements. Fire safety training may include, as appropriate:

  • Action to take when a fire is discovered, including how to raise the alarm.
  • What to do if you hear the alarm.
  • Procedures for alerting and evacuating members of the public.
  • Arrangements for calling the fire brigade.
  • Location of fire escape routes and the fire assembly point.
  • Importance of keeping fire doors closed (to prevent the spread of fire, heat and smoke).
  • The location and, where appropriate, use of fire fighting equipment.
  • How to stop machines and isolate power.
  • Storage of flammable materials used on the premises.
  • The importance of general fire safety and good housekeeping.

If fire safety arrangements are relatively simple, the training will not need to take long and will be delivered by the GSL or appropriate alternative.

Author:  Ian Hayward

Next review: September 2015