Unfortunately, there isn't a definitive answer to this, it largely depends on the size and layout of your premises. You need to conduct risk assessments to assess how many people are in your building and if your building is a low/medium or high-risk building. Throughout our experience of talking with thousands of organisations, the general guidance is 1 Fire Warden for every 10 members of staff but this can depend if you are a high/medium or low-risk business. It is then sensible for each Fire Warden to have a deputy in case of absence.
In order to determine the number of Fire Wardens required to satisfy your legal health and safety requirements, you must first determine how many ‘areas’ your workplace contains. There are three general rules for working out how many areas your workplace can be divided into:
You must also take into consideration how many designated fire assembly points your business has; as this will also have an impact on the number of fire wardens necessary to ensure complete site safety. In order to make sure your business is covered, a Fire Warden should be present in each area, for each shift and assembly point at all times.
Here are 10 useful fire safety tips to help prevent fire in the workplace:
- Provide fire safety training for staff (this is a legal requirement!) and carry out fire drills regularly.
- Fire risk assessments need to be carried out annually and if there are any changes in the building itself too.
- Aim to test your fire alarms weekly.
- Carry out checks of the building e.g. escape routes, and make sure no escape routes are blocked.
- You should have sufficient emergency procedures in place to evacuate a building during a fire.
- Any type of checks, training or drills should be recorded in a safety book.
- Emergency lights should be fully functioning and tested regularly to test that they are working.
- Fire doors should not be held open and should not be damaged rendering them ineffective.
- Fire action notices should be near to call points.
- Emergency exit signs should be visible and illuminated.
Completing a Fire Risk Assessment will point out exactly how many Wardens you need. It makes sense to ensure you have ample cover.
Our IOSH and RoSPA approved & CPD accredited Fire Warden Training helps you work towards compliance with the Fire Safety Order 2005 and other current legislation. It covers, your responsibilities, the correct fire extinguishers to use and fire prevention and evacuation.