Wednesday 31 March 2010

Fire Safety (Employees' Capabilities) (England) Regulations 2010 come into force

From 6 April 2010, new regulations will clarify your responsibilities to consider the capabilities of your workers to carry out any fire safety-related tasks or assignments.

These regulations (which comprise just a single sentence) mean that you will have to think about:

1. What a worker is able and unable to do when giving them tasks
2. How these capabilities may affect their ability to deal with fire-related risks

For example, you will have to consider a worker's capabilities as regards fire safety if you ask them to work with petrol.

These regulations should not impose any extra burden on your business. They simply re-impose a duty that:

* You had before the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 came into force in October 2006
* Is implicit in your wider health and safety duties

You are reminded that you continue to have a general duty to:

1. Carry out a fire safety risk assessment to identify the general fire precautions you need to put in place
2. Regularly review the assessment and make any necessary changes
3. Pay particular attention to young people when carrying out or reviewing a risk assessment

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