Appointing a Clear Chain of Command for fire safety within an organisation
A clear chain of command must be created in an organisation to ensure that emergency procedures run smoothly.
Depending on the size of an organisation and/or the physical space occupied, different roles are required.
Key Roles and Responsibilities:
Chief Fire Warden – This individual (or multiple individuals, depending on the size of an organisation) has overall responsibility for a fire event, including preparation and planning.
Assistant Fire Warden – This individual (or multiple individuals, depending on the size of an organisation) is responsible for contacting the fire department and all relevant emergency services (call 000), alert all employees, and aiding chief fire warden to check all staff and visitors are present in case of emergency.
Other roles that may be required:
Fire Extinguisher – An individual (or multiple individuals) who is knowledgeable in operating a portable fire extinguisher. In the case of a fire, these individuals will attempt to put it out only in the case that the fire has NOT LEFT ITS ORIGIN. PLEASE NOTE: If the fire can’t be brought under control within 30 seconds, the fire extinguisher must STOP, close the door and escape safely.
Staff and Visitors – Staff may also require a certain degree of responsibility, as they may be required to assist visitors and other staff to exit the building. For this reason, it is recommended that companies:
- Have an informative and clear evacuation plan in place for staff and any visitors to the building.
- Ensure all staff are fully informed and knowledgeable about the procedures required in an evacuation.
- Ensure all or most staff are aware of procedures in place to assist visitors and other people with their evacuation – the main goal being to ensure that nobody is confused or lost when it comes time to evacuate.