Fire Safety Support provides internal support in three areas: Fire Safety Database, Fire Safety Statistics and Fire Safety Training.
Fire Investigation is a public function and is carried out by all operational fire officers. In addition West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service also has a specialist Fire Investigation Team which provide 24 hour/365 day availability as required. The specialist team investigates the cause of fire in a variety of incident types: large fires, fires where the cause cannot be determined, and fires where people may have been injured or have died.
The section works closely with the Police, other Brigades and organisations such as insurance companies. They also work on projects including arson reduction, human behavior in fire, the main causes of fire and the compilation of information identifying trends in fire causes. This information is vital when targeted initiatives and campaigns relating to raising fire safety awareness take place.
Levels of Fire Investigation
Level 1 – These investigations are normally carried out by the Incident Commander or an Officer from the initial attendance. Level 1 covers the majority of fires attended by the Brigade and should be used where the cause of the fire is obvious and can be arrived at without excessive delay of operational crews and appliances.
Level 2 – These investigations are undertaken by a specialist Fire Investigation Officer who has attended the appropriate Fire Investigation courses. There are six Station Managers and four Watch Managers conditioned to the flexible duty system who are able to provide this function.
Level 3 – These are usually multi-agency investigations of a more serious nature and are carried out by a Station Manager with the appropriate qualifications who has undertaken a master’s degree in fire and forensic investigation or an equivalent qualification. This is a regional team of which West Yorkshire has two level 3 officers, South Yorkshire and Humberside has two and North Yorkshire has three.
A member of the Fire Investigation Team will automatically be mobilised to the following types of incidents:
• All Fatalities or incidents where fire related injuries are likely to prove fatal.
• All fires where six or more appliances attend.
• All explosions.
• All fires where persons carried out self-rescue through unusual routes.
• To all confirmed persons reported incidents.
• To premises where there has been more than one attendance to a fire in the same premises within a 24 hour period.
What Is Fire Engineering?
- An application of scientific/engineering principles, rules, codes and judgement, based on understanding the phenomena and effects of fire plus human behaviour within it
- To protect people, property and environment from destruction by fire
- Assessment of hazards and risks of fire and effects
- Mitigation of potential fire damage by design, construction, arrangement, and use of building materials, structures, industrial processes, transportation systems etc
- Appropriate level of evaluation for optimum preventive and protective measures necessary to limit consequences of fire
- Design, installation, maintenance and/or development of fire detection, fire suppression (682.56kb), fire control and fire related communication systems/equipment
- Direction and control of appropriate equipment/manpower in strategy/function of fire fighting and rescue operations
- Post-fire investigation, analysis, evaluation and feedback
Fire Engineered Buildings
Due to varying types of building design/use, it is impractical to apply a precise definition of a type of development falling within the category of fire engineered project or complex building.
Examples below offer guidance on projects for consideration:
- Any new development, refurbishment or adaptation of an existing building that includes: A shopping complex falling within the definition given in BS 5588 Part 10: 1991 (sec 2.8)
- A building containing an atrium within the definition of BS5588 Part 7: 1997 (sec 1)
- A building where fire engineering design strategy is used to demonstrate compliance with the functional requirements of Part B (Fire Safety) of The Building Regulations 2000
- An indoor arena, large entertainment or assembly complex, mass transit system interchange or similar project.
- Any large or unusual project where extended or complex consultation with the design team is necessary, which would require a disproportionate amount of a time given by a District based Planning Officer
The premises identified above tend to be classed high risk with regard to property and/or life safety, and therefore specific tactical plans may benefit Operational crews.
When such a project/building is identified, either on planning application or through pre-submission meetings with Building Control (or Approved Inspector), the specialist Group Manager, or Station Manager is responsible for the strategy for dealing with any statutory consultation under the Building Regulations and other legislation.
For details of our Petroleum and Explosives team, please click HERE
Alcohol and Entertainment
The Licensing Act 2003 came into force on 24 November 2005.
Licensing Authorities are responsible for licensing sale/supply of alcohol, provision of regulated entertainment and provision of late night refreshment in England and Wales. If you carry out these activities, you will need relevant authorisation and should speak to your local licensing authority.
Licensing authorities carry out their functions and promote four licensing objectives:
- Prevention of crime/disorder
- Public safety
- Prevention of public nuisance
- Protection of children from harm
Licensing authorities must decide applications in connection with premises licences and club premises certificates on the basis of the steps it considers necessary to promote these objectives.
Fire Service Role
Applicants are strongly advised to contact their local Fire Safety District Licensing Officer to seek our views before formally submitting their application. Many of the fire precautions which will be necessary are required by law, and by consulting at an early stage the applicant can avoid costly additional works later in the process.
In addition, where the application does not indicate satisfactory fire precautions the Fire Authority can make a formal representation to the licensing authority. This can result in the application being rejected or conditions being included as part of any license which is granted.
A failure to provide satisfactory fire precautions to ensure the safety of employees and other relevant persons may be a breach of The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and may lead to prosecution.
Where building work is necessary either to build or alter licensed premises the work should be carried out in accordance with Building Regulations requirements. For further information regarding Building Regulations requirements visit the Planning Portal.
Further Advice – Advice Leaflet – Government Links (126.96kb)
For further advice regarding the application process please contact your local authority licensing department;
- Leeds 0113 247 4095
- Bradford 01274 432240
- Calderdale 01422 393093
- Kirklees 01484 223470
- Wakefield 01924 302922
What Is Fire Safety Enforcement?
The primary focus of fire safety enforcement is to ensure public safety from fire and its effects in places used for commercial, business and leisure activities, and that the law is complied with.
In premises that sell or store petroleum and/or explosives, other legislation requires adequate fire safety measures are in place and where necessary enforced that will minimise the risk to the public before a licence is issued by the Authority. In these types of premises, where necessary, we will work with the Health and Safety Executive, local and district authorities and the police to ensure that the legislation is complied with.
Fire safety officers employed by this authority will have the necessary expertise and competence to enforce the appropriate legislation that is appropriate to the risk presented. The Authority has adopted and has signed up to the Enforcement Concordat to ensure that any enforcement action taken is in line with nationally agreed best practice.
Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 has simplified and consolidated previous fire legislation, making it easier to understand and therefore comply with. A series of 11 guides (126.96kb) has been produced, each appropriate to the occupancy type, that provide guidance and assistance in the necessary preventative and protective measures to comply with the Order and provide a safe place for the public to occupy.
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 came into force on 1 October 2006. The Fire Safety Order applies in England and Wales. Northern Ireland and Scotland will have their own laws.
Responsibility for enforcing the Order in most premises in West Yorkshire will be West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Authority. Inspections of those premises that present the highest risk to the community will be completed following a risk-based inspection programme.
The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) provides additional information. They have published a series of guides to assist those responsible for fire safety in premises on how to comply with the new Order and provide detailed information on risk assessments and other issues.
Building Regulations & Fire Safety
West Yorkshire Fire and Rescue Service provide a consultation service to Local Authority Building Control departments and Approved Inspectors. Consultation relates to fire safety provisions in the design, construction and adaptation of buildings. Legal requirements and national guidance determine the consultation process. For detailed information click HERE
The Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 2007
These Regulations revoke and replace the Construction (Design and Management) Regulations 1994 (S.I. 1994/3140) (Parts 2 and 3) and revoke and re-enact, with modifications, the Construction (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1996.
Regulations 39, 40 and 41 refer to fire safety standards.
Where the premises are under construction and are also occupied i.e. there is no distinction between the construction site and occupied premises, the fire and rescue authority is the enforcing authority.
This is also the case for occupied premises that have means of escape which are dependant on passing through the construction site. Where there is clear distinction between construction and occupied sites, the construction site is enforced by the HSE and the occupied site is enforced by the relevant enforcing authority under the Order.
Where construction is carried on within a fenced site, the area within the fence is enforced by the HSE, and those areas without the fence are enforced by the relevant enforcing authority detailed in the Order at article 25. In the case of sites occupied solely as construction sites, the HSE is the enforcing authority.