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Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

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Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by hammer1 »

Another prosecution on a fire risk assessor, how many is that now? 3 or 4 I think

In summing up this case, the judge said that competence is knowing when you yourself aren’t able to do something – and that risk assessors should recognise the limits of their experience and expertise.

Area manager Steve Helps, said, “This verdict should serve as a stark warning to building owners that people carrying out fire risk assessments should be competent and able to properly consider all of the risks within buildings, particular where people’s lives could be placed at risk.

“The sentence in this case proves that people will rightly be held to account if risk assessments are found to be insufficient.”



https://www.fsmatters.com/Fire-risk-assessor-prosecuted

Also

https://www.syfire.gov.uk/fire-safety-w ... sentenced/
Last edited by hammer1 on Wed Sep 04, 2019 4:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by hammer1 »

Also as not being the RP, I presume he got found guilty via Article 5, 3?
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by bernicarey »

Linking to South Yorks site for the details of the assessor, it gives the same info as the FSM link:
http://www.syfire.gov.uk/fire-service-i ... rosecuted/

I think you're right about s5(3), because of what it says in s5(4)
(4) Where a person has, by virtue of any contract or tenancy, an obligation of any extent in relation to

(a)the maintenance or repair of any premises, including anything in or on premises; or

(b)the safety of any premises,

that person is to be treated, for the purposes of paragraph (3), as being a person who has control of the premises to the extent that his obligation so extends.
I think all of us read these cases and it brings an element of doubt to our minds, but then you read just how poor these premises are and you think, 'Well I'd have spotted that'.
the service identified a number of serious fire safety concerns. These included the fact that there was poor fire separation between flats and the corridor escape route at the time that tenants moved in to the property. Dust covers had been left on smoke detectors and a roller shutter door which could have been used as an escape route in the event of a fire was found to be inadequate.

When I was doing site inspections last year on a building conversion to student rooms, although it wasn't in my remit as such, I repeatedly documented concerns about poorly fitted Fire Doors to the student rooms as the project neared it's end.
The answer I was given was always that it would be corrected on the Snagging works. :shock:
If it's done properly to start with, you don't need the rework of the snagging.
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by witsd »

We often think that when we have completed our study of one we know all about two, because 'two' is 'one and one.' We forget that we still have to make a study of 'and.'

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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by stephen1974 »

As i've said before, you don't know what you don't know and if you go on a fire risk assessors many people will come away thinking " i'm now trained and competent " when they are just not.

It would be useful for his report to be published with comments stating why it was insufficient. Use it as a case study etc etc...

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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by bernicarey »

The individual named on the reports, David Thompson of Toftwood Health & Safety Solutions, no longer has an active business website.
He does have a LinkedIn profile, and from that I traced him to a profile on the OSHCR , which isn't very well completed. Nowhere mentions Fire Safety as one of his skills/competencies.....

As the FRS identified
a number of serious fire safety concerns. These included the fact that there was poor fire separation between flats and the corridor escape route at the time that tenants moved in to the property. Dust covers had been left on smoke detectors and a roller shutter door which could have been used as an escape route in the event of a fire was found to be inadequate.
I can only assume that none of this was included in the FRA.
If it had been, then he would presumably have been in the clear and all attention would be on the RP.
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by witsd »

It is a real shame that we don't get to see the FRA in question...

My rather cynical guess is that it is so poor that seeing it would immediately put our minds at ease regarding our own work, and the powers that be feel that it will have more of an impact on the industry as a whole to keep the failings unknown.
We often think that when we have completed our study of one we know all about two, because 'two' is 'one and one.' We forget that we still have to make a study of 'and.'

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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by bernicarey »

I'm wondering if an FoI request might reveal more. The HSE have their published details of Notices given out, why shouldn't the FRS do the same.... Umm something to ponder on today, I might try it....
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by bernicarey »

Well I submitted a FOI request but it didn't really give me much.
There is a little bit more info available via the NFCC Website
http://www.cfoa.org.uk/11823?pv=view&id=2365321

Just put the Post Code S1 4FU in the relevant search box.
It gives you the Enforcement and the Prohibition Notice details.

The Enforcement Notice was 10 November 2017 followed by the Prohibition Notice on 20th November; it seems to have taken them 10 days to decide the PN was needed. .scratch

If you go to http://www.syfire.gov.uk/transparency/registers-new/
and look at the link for Sheffield Public Register 2017-19 , go to pages 19 and 21.
Enforcement
Details:
Article 9 (1)The Fire Safety Risk Assessment was not suitable and sufficient.
Article 14 (2) (b)The escape routes and exits could not be used as quickly and as safely as possible.
Article 14 (2) (g)The escape routes were not provided with adequate signage.
Article 14(2) (h)The escape routes did not have adequate emergency lighting in case of failure of normal lighting circuits.
Article 15 (1) (a)Insufficient evacuation procedures and/or evacuation drills to be followed in the event of serious and imminent danger are in place.
Article 17 (1)The structural and passive fire precautions are inadequately maintained.

Prohibition
Details:
The Fire and Rescue Authority are further of the opinion that the matter(s) which will give rise to the said risk are:
The shutter being in the closed position (down) at the entrance/exit of Belgravia House, which causes inadequate means of escape for Hexagon Apartments.
If the shutter is closed (down) no one is to sleep, relax, or reside in Hexagon Apartments
You sort of have to read both the SYFRS site and the NFCC website to put the picture together.

So that Assessor really did miss quite a lot.
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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by stephen1974 »

Interesting that it says insufficient emergency lighting.

I've just been to three properties who have recently had building work done and as part of the process, new lighting was installed, but in each case i've come along and said the emergency lighting in insufficient. Actally, in all three properties there was no emergency lighting what so ever in stairwells.

If risk assessors are going to be held accountable, surely others must as well, beuilders, electricians etc... its not like they dont know you have to have em in specified places.

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Re: Another fire risk assessor prosecuted

Post by bernicarey »

stephen1974 wrote:
Tue Nov 26, 2019 11:42 pm
Interesting that it says insufficient emergency lighting.

I've just been to three properties who have recently had building work done and as part of the process, new lighting was installed, but in each case i've come along and said the emergency lighting in insufficient. Actally, in all three properties there was no emergency lighting what so ever in stairwells.

If risk assessors are going to be held accountable, surely others must as well, beuilders, electricians etc... its not like they dont know you have to have em in specified places.
Yes, you're right. I'm guessing that in this case, the Assessor hadn't picked this up, amongst all the other things they hadn't picked up.
Last year I was doing some fortnightly inspections on a building conversion project for Student Digs.
I not only looked at the way the site was being organised/managed, but I also reported on what I felt were 'future issues' regarding EL, Fire Doors etc.
I just hope they had a competent Fire Risk assessor come in before the place opened.
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