Fire Safety Checklist for Care Homes
Drawing our care home fire safety series to a close, Fire Action have compiled the most important pieces of knowledge to form an essential ‘Fire Safety Checklist’. Here, we cover the questions you should be asking when it is time to create both risk assessments and Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans (PEEPs), providing handy templates for you to produce your own.
Care Home Fire Risk Assessment Template
When creating fire risk assessments for care homes, consider the following:
- Potential ignition/fuel sources identified and removed if possible.
- All detectors are placed in appropriate locations and are regularly maintained.
- Electrical detectors, warning systems and lighting are regularly tested and have backup power supplies in place.
- Fire extinguishers are suitable for the type of fire most likely to break out in that specific environment. All extinguishers should be kept in good condition.
- Ensure escape routes are clear and danger-free.
- Create an emergency plan, and PEEPs for residents who struggle with evacuation. Ensure everyone is familiar with the emergency plans, both staff and residents alike.
- Make sure equipment and safety routes are clearly marked.
- Check that all emergency lighting is still working, and that all are correctly placed to offer maximum advantage.
- Train all staff to ensure they are fully competent with the risks and procedures.
- Assign fire wardens to act as fire safety representatives in your building.
- Regularly check that the parking spaces for emergency vehicles are kept clear.
- Pay attention to the construction and layout of the building, along with positioning of staircases and fire doors. This could affect the spread of the fire and evacuation of the premises.
- Competency is everything. To make sure nothing is missed, hire a specialist fire safety company to carry out your fire risk assessment. You may think you’ve covered everything, but sometimes a professional eye can spot dangers you may have overlooked. Companies such as Fire Action have the accreditation and skills to perform a complete fire risk assessment for your care home.
Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) Template
If an individual’s escape could be impaired by a condition affecting mobility, neurological function, senses, or long-term illness, they will require a Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP) drawing up. The following sections should be filled in:
- Resident details: Name, room number, location in the building, and the nearest emergency exit or staircase.
- Awareness method: How will the staff be informed of the resident’s need to be evacuated? E.g. the existing alarm system, a pager, or other methods.
- Who will assist?: Write the details of the designated members of staff who will assist that particular resident. Also take into account night staff, should a fire strike at these hours.
- Method and equipment: What techniques and equipment are best suited to that individual, based on their needs/condition? This may need to include adapted ways of communicating, as well as lifting and carrying techniques that are different from the ordinary.
- Personalised evacuation procedure: A step-by-step plan of evacuation, beginning with the very first sounding of the alarm.
- Monitor & Review: Leave space for future monitoring and reviewing of the PEEP, which is most commonly done after fire drills, but can be done any time. It’s important to always look out for changes to the building, staff, hazards and residents’ conditions, and alter the PEEP accordingly.
- Signatures: Have the document signed by the site Responsible Person and the individual in question, if the individual is able to do so.
Get your fire risk assessment completed by the professionals. Here at Fire Action, we use our 16 years’ experience to create fire risk assessments for a huge range of clients, including care homes. We also provide fire safety equipment and products, along with fire safety training for staff. We serve the entire South East region and beyond, including Kent, so get in touch today for more information.