by Will Mason
Tel: 020 8541 5646
The protection against fire, if successful, is more effective than purely minimizing the effects of fire. Curiously, however, fire prevention is frequently overlooked in favour of fire protection. Historically, in enforcing legislation, inspecting officers of local authority fire and rescue services (Also known as ‘fire prevention officers’) have invested most of their time addressing fire protection measures.
However, fire prevention is usually a question of straightforward common sense and does not at all times require complex procedures or substantial technology. Maybe it is because many fire prevention measures are almost insignificant, that they are occasionally considered by managers and qualified engineers as not worthy of their time and attention. As opposed, to the level of engineering and the capital expense connected with many fire protection measures causes them to become a greater attraction.
Additionally, there is a common perception that fires are expected, and that, as a result, only fire protection need to receive consideration.
Fire protection, should only complement fire prevention; it should never be considered as a replacement.
The majority of fires are due to a limited amount of categories of ignition sources. If it were achievable to eradicate fires that originate from arson, smokers’ materials and electrical sources of ignition, the amount of fires that occur in the UK could be dramatically reduced. Attention to the prevention of these kinds of fires, therefore, significantly reduces the potential risk of fire in any building.
It ought to be mentioned that the present day ‘holistic’ strategy to fire safety certainly requires equal attention to fire prevention and fire protection. Considering the modern concept and description of ‘risk’, it is obviously clear that a fire risk assessment, which is mandatory by the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) requires consideration of fire hazards and their prevention along with fire protection measures.
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