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Richmond Housing Partnership

Date: Revision:

26th October 2011 7.2

Revision Date 1 2 3 4 5 06/06/11 20/06/11 23/06/11 23/06/11 27/06/11

Description Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy Draft Fire Risk Management Strategy

Author Ben Bradford Ben Bradford Ben Bradford Ben Bradford Ben Bradford Jonathan Compton & Ben Bradford Jonathan Compton & Ben Bradford

Reviewed Jonathan Compton Thomas Bradford Ben Whitaker Jonathan Compton Ben Whitaker Sarah Thomas, Anna Benbow, Adedayo Adegbite, Andrew Holloway, Caroline Hand & Bernie O’Connor Approved at H&S Committee 26/11/2011




Approved Fire Risk Management 03/08/11 Strategy


Ben Bradford BSc Hon’s MSc MBA MRICS MIFireE MBEng Director for and on behalf of BB7 BB7 Fire Safety Engineering The Joiners Shop The Historic Dockyard Chatham Maritime Kent ME4 4TZ Tel: Email: 08709 747706

Jonathan Compton Head of Health & Safety and Environment on behalf of RHP Richmond Housing Partnership 8 Waldegrave Road Teddington TW11 8GT Tel: Email: 020 3166 2531

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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 INTRODUCTION ................................................................................................................. 3 ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES ................................................................................................. 4 COMMUNICATION.............................................................................................................. 5 FIRE RISK ASSESSMENT ......................................................................................................... 7 FIRE SAFETY INFORMATION & TRAINING ................................................................................... 10 WORK CONTROL .............................................................................................................. 10 MAINTENANCE AND TESTING................................................................................................ 10 EMERGENCY PLANNING ...................................................................................................... 13 SUMMARY OF RESPONSIBILITIES ............................................................................................ 16 Appendix A ...................................................................................................................... 1

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INTRODUCTION This document sets out RHP’s strategic approach to fire risk management having considered the following factors: 1) 2) 3) 4) 5) 6) 7) Roles and Responsibilities Communication Fire Risk Assessment Fire Safety Training Work Control Maintenance & Testing Emergency Planning

There is a programme of performance monitoring, active monitoring, review and audit in place to ensure that this policy and strategy is complied with internally. The review considers the suitability of this strategy for complying with the RRFSO. There is also a regular programme of internal audit that covers fire risk management among other aspects of health and safety management. 1.1 Scope This document applies to all RHP’s property which, whether owned, leased or otherwise, is under the direct or indirect control of RHP, with the exception of sites under construction. RHP acknowledges that the construction phase of certain types of building, e.g. timber framed, poses a significantly higher fire risk. In any circumstance where RHP has a direct responsibility for the construction phase of any new build we will ensure all relevant legislation is complied with. As a matter of policy, RHP do not allow occupation of timber framed buildings until the construction phase is completed and the building handed over.

Fire Risk Assessment

Emergency Planning

Roles and Responsibilities

Strategic Fire Risk Management
Communication Fire Safety Training

Maintenance & Testing

Work Control

Figure 1 – 7 Factors of Strategic Fire Risk Management

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ROLES AND RESPONSIBILITIES The ultimate responsibility for the adequacy of RHP’s fire risk management efforts rests with the ‘Responsible Person’ as defined by legislation. In the case of RHP the Responsible Person is the Chief Executive (CE) and the Board. The Executive Management Team are responsible for ensuring sufficient resources are in place to implement this fire Risk Management Strategy and meet RHP’s policy objectives. The Executive Director of Corporate Services has the delegated responsibility for ensuring this strategy is properly implemented and complied with. The Head of Health, Safety and Environment is employed as the competent person for RHP and is responsible for ensuring this document is legally compliant and fit for purpose.


Fire Safety Policy This fire safety policy has been approved by The CE and Board of Richmond Housing Partnership Group (RHP) who are the responsible person(s) for ensuring that general fire precautions are taken to prevent fires within non domestic premises, or parts thereof, which, whether owned, leased or otherwise, are under the direct or indirect control of RHP. By doing so RHP seeks to maintain a satisfactory standard of fire safety for the benefit of its employees, contractors, customers and others working within or visiting these premises and to satisfy the legal requirements of all relevant fire safety legislation inclusive of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, Housing Act 2004 and The Fire Safety (Employees Capabilities) (England) Regulations 2010. RHP’s Fire Safety Policy RHP’s policy is to take general fire precautions within properties under our control, in order to reduce the risk to people, property and the environment that is posed by fire to as low as reasonably practicable, whilst complying with statutory legislation. The term ‘as low as reasonably practicable’ is well known within Health and Safety law and for the purposes of RHP’s strategy risk reduction action is taken using this established practice as a baseline. Where relevant good practice is a good fit to the circumstances, then decisions on risk reduction are straightforward. In most cases the required measure will be carried out unless the costs in time, effort or money are grossly disproportionate to any reduction in risk. Where RHP do not, for any reason, follow established guidelines, such as British Standards, we will document our justification for this and ensure the proposed alternative approach is approved by the Board. Justification will be supported in a technical memorandum from our risk assesors to be held on the HS&E Team’s filing system. RHP’s fire safety policy is implemented using the methodology prescribed in the remainder of this document and appendices.

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Authority The CE and Board of RHP will ensure that employees in positions of responsibility for fire safety (duty holders) have the necessary authority, budget and resources to implement and maintain the fire risk management strategy insofar as their responsibilities extend. See section 9 for a full summary of responsibilities by role.


COMMUNICATION Communications procedures include: Internal means of being alerted to a fire or alarm activation; Internal communication between management, and between management and employees relating to this strategy; Messages to employees on fire safety, including emergency procedures; Messages to customers on fire safety, including emergency procedures; Communication with the fire authority on our management strategy and in the event of fire.


Internal Communication There are three main types of internal communication listed above that relate to fire. Being alerted to a fire or fire alarm activation – In the event of a fire event in our residential premises, it is most likely that the first time we hear about a fire it will be from a tenant or leaseholder, or a member of our Customer Contact Centre. In the case of Retirement Housing and Extra Care this is likely to be a Scheme Manager. There is a clear procedure for responding to a fire event set out in the Emergency Planning section of this document. Please note that it applies to action to be taken after the fire event itself has concluded. Fire alarm activations that are either unwanted, e.g. false alarms from system faults or the products of home cooking, will generally arise only in Retirement Housing and Extra Care as a result of the type of fire detection and alarm systems provided. The Fire Brigade may or may not be called out to these activations depending on whether a Scheme Manager is logged-in at the scheme. In the event of unwanted alarm activation: When Scheme Managers are on-site, they will check the location of the alarm to determine if it is an actual fire. If it is they will call the Fire Brigade immediately on 999 and follow their local emergency plan. If not they will re-set the alarm panel. When the site is being monitored by a service provider such as Invicta, they will immediately call the Fire Brigade because they cannot remotely determine the validity of the alarm. The service provider will inform the Scheme Manager when they next sign-in on site. In either situation, the Scheme Manager will be made aware of an alarm activation and report the circumstances surrounding it onto the RIVO system as a Fire Event (false alarm).

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The Head of HS&E communicates the monthly figures of fire alarm activations to the Retirement Housing Manager (RHM) and the Building Services Manager (BSM). Additionally, Scheme Managers record specific information on RIVO for all alarm activations. This information includes the date and time, the particular detector/s that activated, the flat number and the cause of the activation. During the month the RHM, with the assistance of the BSM where necessary, investigates each activation and determines the cause of the alarm. It will generally be one of three things:    A fault with the system or the environment, such as poor ventilation; Inappropriate detectors within dwellings, such as sensitive smoke detectors in kitchens; A particular tenant that is causing a high number of alarm activations.

The RHM and the BSM will decide on the best cause of action to reduce unwanted fire alarm activations. The Head of HS&E will report on the figures and actions plans at the H&S Committee and to the LFB. The Head of HS&E will also report figures in the monthly EMT update. Communication relating to this strategy and on general fire safety – All duty holders should be aware of their responsibilities for fire risk management that are contained within this strategy and all policy and procedures related to it, e.g. site specific emergency plans. These responsibilities can be found in the Summary of Responsibilities section of this document. Means of communicating responsibilities and general fire safety messages are: Annual EMT brief held at the H&S Committee; Specific training, in 1 to 1’s, team meetings or formal training sessions, to teams and employees with responsibilities, e.g. for responding to fire events or completing FRA actions; Fire warden and emergency plan training for Fire Wardens and Scheme Managers; British Safety Council level 1 award in health and safety for all employees; General articles in internal communication such as Inspire and H&S bulletins. 3.2 External Communication – Customers RHP recognises that an important part of reducing the likelihood of fire occurring, and the severity of the consequences when it does, is to raise the awareness and understanding of fire safety principles amongst our customers. Fire safety guidance and advice is communicated at periodic intervals using the following methods: Sign up packs; RHP website articles with links to government sites; Partnership Press / Word on the street (Group publications); Provision of fire safety booklets; Letters to tenants including site specific fire action advice; Articles in resident newsletters on fire safety; Fire action notices.

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In line with government and industry guidance, residents in our purpose built blocks of flats and Retirement Housing (inc’ Extra Care) are advised to stay put in the event of fire elsewhere in the block/building. Exceptions to this are if residents are in a communal area when they become aware of fire of if their own home is affected by smoke or fire. Tenants are also advised to evacuate if instructed by trained RHP Fore Wardens or the Fire Brigade. 3.3 External Communication – LFEPA RHP maintains a good relationship with the Fire Brigade. The Head of HS&E holds monthly meetings with the LFB to discuss progress around our fire risk management and for us to consult with them on strategy proposals and our approach to general fire precautions.


FIRE RISK ASSESSMENT At RHP fire risk assessment is an ongoing process and this principle is underlined in Article 9(3) of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005. The recommendations within the assessments are reviewed internally and, where agreed, implemented as appropriate. The fire risk assessment itself is kept under regular review.


Type 1 Fire Risk Assessments The Head of HS&E is responsible for the implementation, maintenance, monitoring and review of the fire risk assessment programme. The Head of HS&E is also responsible for ensuring the on-going competence of our fire risk assessors. Fire risk assessments are carried out within RHP workplaces and the common areas within housing blocks. All fire risk assessments are carried out by competent assessors. More detail on competence is provided later on. Risk assessment reviews are undertaken within specified timescales. Timescales are as follows: Retirement Housing schemes (inc’ Extra Care) – every year. Converted flats – every year. High rise accommodation (6 storeys and above) – every year. Purpose-built blocks of flats – every 2nd year. If and when there is a need to review risk assessments in the shorter term, this will be addressed according to risk. Reasons for a shorter than specified timescale between risk assessment reviews may be: A serious fire incident that causes significant damage or breaches communal areas; Where we have concerns over a particular tenant regarding the likelihood of causing fire; A major change in the fabric of, or use of, the building; Where we believe a purpose-built block does not support a 2-year review because of compartmentation issues.

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The timescales for FRA review have been discussed and agreed with London Fire Brigade. The recommendations from fire risk assessments are entered onto RIVO Safeguard (RIVO), RHP’s health and safety database. Actions are allocated according to the relevant department responsible for the works arising from the recommendation. The H&S Committee monitor the completion of actions and figures are also reported on a monthly scorecard. Further assessment of blocks – If the risk assessor has reason to believe the compartmentation of a block may have been compromised by un-authorised alterations by tenants he will recommend a further survey. The Head of Asset Management will arrange for a surveyor to attend in the company of the risk assessor and reports will be fed-back in the usual way. 4.2 Completion of related actions/works arising from FRAs In order to achieve our aim of reducing the risk from fire and smoke RHP understands the importance of successful completion of works arising from fire risk assessment. Each action on RIVO is given a review date by the H&S Administrator. For Asset Management actions the initial review date is based upon the schedule in Appendix 1 of this document. RHP aims to meet these timescales wherever possible and to provide detailed justification when it is not. Housing Management issues, which are largely of a smaller significance, are given a review date based upon risk and ease of completion. These initial review dates are subject to change depending on the nature of the action and the risk presented by the related circumstances. Changes will be agreed by the Head of HS&E or approved at the H&S Committee where necessary, e.g. if there is a high risk of an incident. Where the resolution of a high risk action is deferred, interim risk reduction measures should be implemented. Further to this, RHP will provide justification for decisions to go against any recommendation from an FRA report or related communication. 4.3 Clear and present danger Where the risk assessor has immediate concerns of serious and imminent danger he will call the Head of HS&E or another member of the team. The Head of HS&E will take immediate action to instigate the appropriate response and ensure that the situation is made safe within 4 hours. 4.4 Competency Criteria for Fire Risk Assessors All external Fire Risk Assessors will hold third party certification for their fire risk assessment service. Any directly employed or sub-contracted assessors will require registration on a (fire risk assessors’) UKAS accredited certification scheme which complies with BS EN 45011; 1998. Prior to awarding any contract RHP will commission some example FRAs of our properties so that we can judge a company’s standards. We will also consult with the LFB on the quality of completed assessments throughout any contract to ensure they are happy with our style and approach.

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Communal clearance In order to protect the means of escape in all our blocks of flats RHP operate a communal clearance policy. Communal clearance is regularly reviewed as part of active monitoring. Our communal area clearance procedure provides a clear and consistent basis for removing items from communal areas. In general, customers do not have the right to store or leave anything in the common areas of the building, including drying areas and on communal balconies. Where we are made aware of items in communal areas we will firstly label the items to let customers know they are going to be removed. A minimum of 24 hours after labelling we will remove the item(s) to secure storage where it may be kept for up to 12 weeks. For more information please see the communal clearance policy.


Monitoring Arrangements Fire risk assessments – It is important to ensure that fire risk assessments completed on our behalf are of a suitable and sufficient nature and good quality. Therefore we have a service level agreement written into the contract with BB7, our FRA supplier. To ensure this service level is met consistently the FRA reports are checked internally by BB7 before being forwarded to RHP. Further to this the HS&E team undertake a programme of monthly active monitoring which includes a full review of a number of fire risk assessments and completed actions. False alarms – As mentioned earlier, the Head of HS&E communicates the monthly figures of fire alarm activations to the Retirement Housing Manager and the Building Services Manager. In order to identify high risk tenants or faulty alarms they investigate each alarm activation as it is reported. The Head of HS&E also provides figures for review at the H&S Committee and EMT. Communal areas – As mentioned above RHP operate a zero tolerance policy on communal clearance. Tenants are made aware of this policy when they start their tenancy and in regular communications. CLO’s and Caretakers are responsible for ensuring that communal areas and escape routes are clear. Housing Services undertake estate inspections for all housing estates at 6 monthly intervals as agreed by the HS&E Committee. These are recorded on RIVO and any concerns are raised as actions on RIVO and monitored in the usual way. Please note that, due to a different level of fire safety understanding of CLOs/Housing Officers, and the generality of estate inspections, actions picked up by CLOs are not bound by the schedule in Appendix 1 but are taken on a case by case basis. Caretakers conduct weekly checks of properties to ensure that communal areas and escape routes are clear. Retirement Housing Managers are responsible for the weekly testing of fire alarms. They also have a responsibility to ensure that the necessary action is taken to ensure escape routes are kept clear. This is achieved by regular tours and a weekly and annual inspection that is completed and the results entered into RIVO.

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FIRE SAFETY INFORMATION & TRAINING RHP’s employees are given general and site specific fire safety information in a number of ways including: Fire action notices Employee H&S bulletins Articles in the internal newsletter Inspire The Health and Safety Committee Team meeting briefs H&S induction (BSC level 1) All Retirement Housing employees and managers, and office based Fire Wardens, are provided with fire safety awareness training, and site specific emergency plan training, once per year. Senior managers are kept up-to-date with legislation and best practice at the H&S Committee including an annual EMT fire risk brief. Membership of the RHP Health and Safety Committee is arranged in order that all duty holders under this strategy, or their Directors, are present. Senior managers and duty holders are expected to ensure that they are aware of their responsibilities under this strategy. The Head of HS&E is responsible for ensuring this strategy is available and easily accessible. RHP’s Learning and Development team record fire safety training records in order to clearly demonstrate compliance with Articles 19, 21 and 41 of the RRFSO.


The Fire Precautions (Employee Capability) Regulations 2010 In accordance with the above mentioned legislation RHP will take an employee’s capabilities into consideration when setting objectives related to fire risk management.


WORK CONTROL RHP do not operate permit to work systems for our contractors. The Director of Property Services is responsible for ensuring competence and ongoing safety performance for all construction, refurbishment, repairs, maintenance and servicing contractors.


MAINTENANCE AND TESTING Maintenance and testing of fire safety information and fire safety systems is essential to ensure that the general precautionary measures implemented by RHP will operate correctly.

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Maintenance of fire safety information RHP will ensure that when taking ownership of a new building the developer hands over fire safety information, including operation and maintenance manuals, relating to the design and construction of the building and the services, fittings and equipment.


Emergency plan drills Emergency drills are not necessary in purpose built blocks of flats where a ‘stay put’ strategy is in place. In offices and Retirement Housing schemes, emergency procedures will be tested twice per year. Performance of the emergency drill will be reviewed and any improvements found necessary to the management of the evacuation will be reflected in formal amendments to the written instructions. The Facilities Manager will organise emergency drills at 8WR. The Head of Retirement Housing is responsible for ensuring emergency drills are completed twice per year at Retirement Housing schemes and at Dean Road Extra Care.


Electrical Testing The Building Services Manager (BSM) is responsible for ensuring all fixed electrical systems within the common parts of residential buildings are tested as part of a 5 year test and inspection programme. The date of inspection shall be displayed on the main electrical intake panel. The BSM holds the test and inspection programme.


Emergency Lighting Emergency lighting will be provided within communal areas that form part of an emergency escape route where there is insufficient natural or borrowed light. The BSM arranges for testing of emergency lighting to be undertaken every 6 months. RHP do not undertake monthly tests. Although recommended in the current British Standard BS5266, it is only a recommendation. Honeywell currently undertake an annual 3hr test (full discharge) and a 1hr test every 6 months. In the event that high numbers of faults are found during a 6 monthly test, the Building Service Manager will review the frequency of testing for that particular premises until faults or other issues are resolved.


Testing of Fire Alarm Systems Retirement Housing Scheme Managers do a weekly test of fire alarm systems and record the results on RIVO. During this test the sounders and any automated door release or ventilation systems are observed for correct operation.


Asset Management Team Responsibilities

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The Director of Property Services is responsible for ensuring that the Asset Management Team fulfils all its duties. Day to day responsibilities are delegated to various teams whose managers are deemed as duty holders under this strategy. Asset Management will ensure that all fire safety systems, installations and equipment are properly installed and maintained and are regularly serviced according to manufacturer’s instructions. Records of the inspections and any reports provided by the competent person are kept centrally. Asset Management have considered Relevant British Standards when deciding on servicing and maintenance frequencies. Fire safety systems, installations and equipment include: Fire and smoke detection and early warning systems (including door release systems); Automated ventilation; Other ventilation such as permanent vents; Emergency lighting; Dry riser installations; Fire fighting equipment (fire extinguishers); Fire resisting doors (including self-closing devices). The Asset Management Team are responsible for ensuring that all relevant domestic and communal gas appliances, fittings and pipe work are tested for safety on an annual basis. This does not include appliances within leasehold dwellings. Gas appliances are tested by Gas Safe registered engineers. RHP employ the services of Corgi for the purpose of independent quality monitoring of our gas servicing procedures. Asset Management ensure that all new building work and alterations are carried out, and completed, in accordance with the fire safety requirements of the Building Regulations 2010. 7.7 Routine Inspection – Housing Services/Customer Liaison Officers Customer Liaison Officers are responsible for the enforcement of the tenancy conditions as set out in the tenancy agreement or leasehold contract and will take action against any breaches which pose a health and safety risk to the building and/or other occupants, employees, contractors or others. This includes: • • • • • Fire exit doors being held open; Obstructions to fire exits and fire pathways; Storage within the communal areas other than small items set out in the communal storage policy; Any obvious dangerous or hazardous substances stored by residents; Replacement of fire rated front doors with non-fire rated door sets.

If issues are picked-up during visits to estates or blocks, they are called into the CSC and dealt with under the communal clearance procedure. If they are picked up during estate inspections they are recorded on RIVO and actions are followed up in the usual way.

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Routine Inspection – Estate Services Estate Services must ensure that: Waste material of a flammable nature is consigned to rubbish bins or skips – these bins and skips should be kept in designated areas away from buildings in order to minimise the effects of arson. RHP acknowledges taht this may not always be possible due to the nature of some estates. Bin rooms are kept locked shut unless they need to be left open for customers living on the ground floor to dispose of rubbish in which case this factor will be risk assessed. Bins and skips are emptied at sufficiently frequent intervals to ensure that the need for overflow storage is minimised. Flammable waste materials are not permitted to accumulate within the communal areas of RHP properties. Escape routes are kept clear, fire doors are kept closed and that fire exit doors are kept unlocked while the building(s) is occupied.


EMERGENCY PLANNING The Customer Liaison Team must take ownership of all fire events that occur in or on RHP premises excluding permanent offices. Offices come under the responsibility of the Facilities manager. The Head of Housing is responsible for ensuring that RHP responds quickly and appropriately in the aftermath of a fire event at any of our premises (excluding permanent offices). The Housing Services Team Leader is responsible for ensuring this procedure is implemented within their team. Following any fire event, the following teams have objectives to complete: All teams (on hearing if a fire event); Customer Service Centre; Housing Services Team; Repairs Team; Finance Department; Health, Safety and Environment Team. Each team has a specific role to fulfil to ensure all necessary remedial action is taken. The CLO is the main point of contact. Each team takes responsibility for their part of the process once they have been informed and should inform the CLO of progress and any issues that arise.

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Role All employees

Team All teams

Customer Service Agent

Customer Service Centre

Customer Liaison Officer

Housing Services Team

Tasks • All employees must immediately inform the CSC when they are made aware of a fire that has occurred. Employees should provide as much information as possible when reporting a fire to the CSC. • All employees must ensure that any external communication regarding the fire is passed to the CLO and to the HS&E Team. • All employees must ensure that all teams are made immediately aware of any serious threats to safety relating to the fire event. This includes the threat of violence or aggression from tenants. When the CSC receive notification of a fire event they must; Immediately send a QLx to the relevant CLO Team Leader who must then ensure it is passed to a CLO for resolution. Immediately inform all the above teams of the fire event via one email. All available information about the fire should be included in the email. When the CLO receives notification of a fire they must: Immediately complete a QLx report (where they are made aware of the fire event by anyone other than the CSC). Ensure all the above named people have received notification of the fire event. Co-ordinate the response to the fire event. Liaise with tenants and the Asset Management Team to arrange for access for emergency repairs and ongoing works. Make an assessment of customer needs and implement necessary actions. Arrange for temporary accommodation for affected tenants where this is necessary due to fire damage. Inform the Local Authority where emergency accommodation is needed and where vulnerable/high risk tenants need to be re-housed. Follow-up with other teams as necessary until each team confirms that all necessary remedial actions have been completed. Escalate to their Line Manager where there are issues that cannot be resolved by them. The Line Manager must then follow-up with relevant people to identify and resolve issues.

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Head of Repairs

Repairs Team

Financial accountant

Finance Department

Head of HS&E

HS&E Team

When the Head of Repairs receives notification of a fire they must: Ensure the site is made safe within 24 hours. Receive the report from the repairs operatives and liaise with the Planned Maintenance Manager and the CLO. Liaise with the Assistant Financial Accountant to coordinate the insurance response. Work with the insurers to complete remedial works as necessary. Continue to liaise with the CLO until all remedial works are completed. Liaise with the Head of Repairs to co-ordinate the insurance response. Instruct our insurers and loss adjuster accordingly based on the information provided by the Asset Management Team. The HS&E Team will ensure that, A report is completed on RIVO and updated accordingly. The Fire Brigade are aware of the incident. The HS&E Team visit the site with the Fire Officer where necessary. Where there are communal areas, the fire risk assessment is reviewed. We identify any high risk factors e.g. multiple fires at the same address, and inform the relevant team or external agency. Report at the HS&E Committee and to the EMT. The HS&E Team will carry out an investigation in the event of a serious fire where injury is sustained , there is major damage to property or where a fire breached the communal areas of a block.

The table above contains the tasks that each team must complete for each fire that occurs. In the event of an out-of-hours fire event, the normal procedure will be followed for out-of-hours incidents. The response process will then be picked up at the start of the next working day. 8.1 Monitoring Fire Loss Experience The collection of data from fire incidents in RHP premises is important as lessons can be learnt from routine reports as well as the comparatively few serious fires experienced by RHP. These lessons are taken into account when updating and amending fire policy and practices. Because large fires can develop from insignificant beginnings the fire authority must be called to all fires.

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Fires and false alarms in the following areas are to be reported on RIVO as Fire Events: Offices & workplaces; Retirement Housing and Extra Care schemes; Communal areas of general needs blocks of flats. Fires which occur within domestic parts of general needs premises must not be reported on RIVO unless the fire spreads to the common areas. Details of these fires must be reported to the HS&E team by email. 8.2 Contingency Planning RHP’s contingency planning is proactive and takes into account a wide range of possible emergencies and incidents. These include planning for logistical issues such as the provision of shelter, communications, transport, the weather, time of day, time of week, time of year (holidays etc) and traffic related issues, as well as serious power failures or floods. The Head of ICT is responsible for the RHP business continuity plan.

9 9.1

SUMMARY OF RESPONSIBILITIES CE and EMT The CE is ultimately accountable for the adequacy of RHP’s fire risk management system. RHP, the CE and Board are identified as the Responsible Person for fire safety within RHP. The Executive Director of Corporate Services is responsible for ensuring this fire risk strategy is properly implemented and complied with throughout RHP. The Executive Director of Customer Services is responsible for ensuring the implementation of all matters relating to Customer Services, Housing Services, Property Services and Estate Services. The Executive Director of Finance is responsible for ensuring the availability of adequate budgetary resources to properly implement and maintain this fire risk management strategy.


The Head of Health, Safety and Environment The Head of HS&E is responsible for ensuring this fire risk management strategy is adequate, fit for purpose, allows for RHP to be legally compliant as a minimum and to achieve good practice where it is reasonable to do so. The Head of HS&E is responsible for monitoring, auditing and reviewing the suitability of this fire risk management strategy and RHP’s compliance with it.

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The Head of HS&E is responsible for the development, implementation and maintenance of the fire risk assessment programme for all relevant RHP premises. 9.3 The Director of Customer Services and the Director of Property Services The Directors of Customer Services and Property Services are responsible for the day-to-day implementation of this fire risk management strategy within their respective business areas. They are responsible for managing their budgets and resources in such a way as to make enough available to carry out their responsibilities. They are responsible for ensuring that managers with delegated responsibilities are competent to carry them out, are fully aware of them and are provided with such information, training and supervision as is necessary. 9.4 Managers Managers must: Ensure that all new employees attend the required induction training. Ensure that new employees recruited or transferred to their areas are aware of local fire action and emergency procedures. Ensure that employees within their teams with delegated responsibilities are competent to carry them out, are fully aware of them and are provided with such information, training and supervision as is necessary. 9.5 Employees Employees must ensure that they: Respect the no-smoking rule when working in or visiting RHP properties. Refrain from using privately owned portable electric equipment in any RHP properties. In situations where it is necessary, permission must be sought from the Facilities Manager. Comply with local fire evacuation procedures. Ensure sufficient clear space is maintained in rooms where they have control either on a temporary basis e.g. for a meeting or permanent basis e.g. their workplace to allow persons in the room to move freely to the exits of the room. In the event of discovering a fire or hearing the fire alarm, take appropriate action in accordance with fire action notices or other instructions and training that they have received. Assist members of the public to leave the buildings in an orderly manner and proceed to the assembly point. Do not interfere with, or misuse equipment provided thereby placing themselves and others at risk e.g. wedging open fire doors or misuse of fire extinguishers. Treat all fire drills or exercises as the real thing. Report all fires and near misses e.g. attempted fires or false alarm activations. Report any concerns they have about fire hazards or defective fire equipment, so that appropriate measures can be identified and implemented. Co-operate with fire wardens in the event of an evacuation.

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10 10.1

Appendix A Serious and imminent danger and immediate concerns If the fire risk assessor comes across an instance of serious and imminent danger, or has immediate concerns relating to the fire safety of a block, he will immediately call the Head of Health, Safety & Environment (HS&E). The Head of HS&E will take immediate action to instigate the appropriate response and ensure that the situation is made safe within 4 hours.


Asset Management works schedule for fire risk assessment The table below identifies completion times for works to address significant hazards that present a particular risk relating to: Building compartmentation Means of escape Fire alarms and early warning The works in the table relate to building structure and installations, i.e. work that Asset Management is responsible for.

Area affected by hazard Building compartmentation

Nature of hazard Communal fire doors including front doors to flats

Risk evaluation A relevant door that is in bad condition and offering no significant fire resistance. Any other relevant door that is identified as High Risk and the finding is agreed by the HS&E Team and Asset Management

Timescale Within 10 weeks. These doors will be prioritised and put to the front for the fire door replacement programme

Exceptions The fire door programme prioritises doors within enclosed corridors over doors that open on balconies to fresh air. Doors that open onto a balcony with one escape route are prioritised over those that have alternative means of escape.

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A relevant door that is identified as not FD30S but providing nominal 20 minute fire resistance Breaches of fire compartmentation Significant holes between fire compartments, e.g. ½ brick or larger

These will be added to the existing fire door replacement programme

As per fire door programme. The fire door programme initiated in 2011 is planned to replace c700 doors over a 2 year period. Holes in non-visible areas can be fixed more quickly because they do not need to have an aesthetically pleasing finish. It is assumed that if a hole in compartmentation walls are of a size to be of immediate concern, we will have picked this up on estate inspections. Also a hole of this size will be flagged up by the assessor as an immediate concern and dealt with as an emergency.

Holes in non-visible areas, e.g. above a false ceiling: 2 months Holes in visible areas, e.g. communal corridors: 3 months

Air bricks that breach compartmentation of flats or communal areas Means of escape Travel distances Internal travel distances from a potential fire to a place of relative or ultimate safety have been assessed as too long

9 months as part of a roiling programme of low risk works 9 months for the provision of additional internal fire door sets These works will only be agreed where the HS&E Team and Asset Management have reviewed the recommendation and surrounding circumstances. Instances where these recommendations may not be implemented are where, e.g. the building still complies with legislation from the time of the build, or, the addition of more doors could create further hazards to occupants.

2 Richmond Housing Partnership Strategic Fire Risk Management 26/11/2011 Rev – 7.2 –JC2


Escape routes, lobbies or staircases are not suitably ventilated

Buildings up to 5 storeys: 5 months Buildings with 6 or more storeys: 9 months

Fire detection and alarms

Fire detection and alarms

Repairs to existing systems

Works ordered immediately on receipt of information relating to a fault 6 months where action is agreed Our contractor will address the actions and complete them in as short a timescale as is reasonable in the circumstances but within 6 months This timescale will be regularly reviewed along with available resources and budgets. Low risk items will be allowed to move onto the next 2-year cycle. Any works that can be completed as quick-wins will be addressed even if they are low risk.

New systems or additional upgrades to existing All other Asset Management actions Fire risk general All other actions that are high or medium priority will be addressed as part of a rolling 6 month programme.

3 Richmond Housing Partnership Strategic Fire Risk Management 26/11/2011 Rev – 7.2 –JC2