Fire Alarm - The Debate - LocksOnline
There is great debate looming on one of the Linkedin groups I follow ‘FIA’
The question is!
Should Hotels be allowed to receive guests if the fire alarm system is not working.
I have to assume that the fire alarm is not working full stop, not that only part of it is not working.
The debate has been quite extensive, some suggest No they can't, others suggest yes they can. Some have gone into great detail on what is required and how they need to meet this standard and so on, some have gone completely off topic in their repsonces.
So I have decided to give my 10p worth to the debate as well.
A lot of people may not know but in 2005 a new law was past that actually became law a year later in 2006. (October) this new law is called ‘The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005’ It is in effect totally re written the rules when it comes to Fire Safety.
Before this new law the rules were relatively simple, call the Fire Birgade or the Fire safety officer from the fire birgade and they would call on you. he would give you a list of things that you needed to do to maintain the fire integrity of the building, you did these most of the time reluctantly (well some people may say :-)) and every thing was fine. I have to say in my view this was the best way of maintaining fire safety in a building, the tax payer trained specialist individuals in the fire brigade who could give expert advice on fire safety matters and the less trained could rely on that advice as being sound. Or was it !
One of the major stumbling blocks with the old fire reg, was that once a fire certificate was issued on a building, and as long as that building was not altered in any way, the Fire Birgade could not force any upgrades or amendments to the building or its fire safety, an example of this may be a fire alarm that would have been fitted in the 70’s but technology has increased over the years and for the better, so upgrading seemed to be the logical thing to do, but alas the owner did not have to and no one could force him to.
They tried with the introduction of fire safety in the work place regs that came out around the late 90’s if I am correct, but there was loads of loop holes.
Going back to the original discussion, should the hotel be allowed to open and in my view yes, and also in my view they don’t need a fire alarm system in which to function. The new regulatory reform fire safety order implies in my understanding that a procedure has to be in place to mitigate the risk. this could in effect be a group of individuals employed as fire watchers, supply them with Fire Triangles, and should they notice a fire then they can raise the alarm and help evacuate the building.
As there is a procedure in place to detect fire, would the authorities be happy with this. I would suggest that they may have to be because it is a system used the world over and in the petro-chemical industry.
So can a hotel operate without a working fire alarm, Yes they can.
Obviously this is only my opinion and to be honest it would be far cheaper to fix the alarm than pay a bunch of people to watch for fire :-)
Many thanks for having a read
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