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Combat the Threat of Arson

Employers must reduce the risk of fire from all causes. Arson is the main cause of fire in the UK and there are a range of actions that can be taken to combat this threat.

Responsibility issues

1. In any business the owner or manager or a named senior person must be made the “responsible person” for all fire related matters including arson prevention.

2. The responsible person should take an overview of how easy it is to break into the premises and create a plan to rectify this.

3. The responsible person should look at the history of fires in his own site and other neighbouring sites

Security issues

4. Two entrances can be difficult to manage – one permanently manned entrance is best.

5. Outer fences, walls and gates should be high enough and have enough strength to ensure intruders are kept out.

6. Doors and windows should be in good order and locked when not being used.

7. Ensure high quality locks are utilised.

8. Gaps that can be seen under doors should be avoided.

9. Ensure that letter boxes are of high quality and ideally have ages on the inside.

10. Have a clear key holder policy.

11. Avoid stacking combustible materials near perimeter fences

Employee issues

12. Warn staff of the threat from arson fires. Staff should have a good understanding of the threat from arson

13. Staff should be vigilant of non-authorised personnel on site and should challenge them.

14. New starters should be adequately vetted

15. External contractors should be supervised

Visitor issues

16. You must control visitor movements on the site

Fire protection issues

17. Protect fire safety equipment from the possibility of sabotage.

End of day checking procedures

18. You or a named individual must be responsible for securing the building at the end of each working day. The building must be fully secures when everyone has left and someone must be responsible for this.

19. All doors and windows must be secured.

20. Check to ensure combustible items are not lying around

21. Check to ensure unauthorised individuals are not in the building when locked up.

22. Alarms must be set.

23. External lighting must be operative.

24. Ensure all liquids that could be flammable are secured in correct storage facilities.

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