The government have issued their response to the Home Office’s fire safety consultation that ran from July to October 2020. It provides a summary of the responses received and sets out the next steps the government will take to strengthen fire safety for all regulated buildings which include:

  • legislating through the Building Safety Bill to strengthen the Fire Safety Order in a number of key areas
  • delivering new regulations through Article 24 of the Fire Safety Order in response to the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 Report recommendations
  • implementing changes to improve engagement between building control bodies and fire and rescue services

Key steps to be taken forward include:

  • strengthen the provision relating to statutory guidance issued under Article 50 of the FSO.
  • require that, where the RP appoints a person to make or review the fire risk assessment that they must be competent.
  • require that all RPs must record their completed fire risk assessment.
  • require that all RPs must record (and as necessary update) their contact information, including a UK based address.
  • require that all RPs must take reasonable steps to identify themselves to all other RPs (and where applicable Accountable Persons under the BSB) where they share or have duties in respect of the same premises.
  • require that, for all regulated premises in England and Wales, RPs must record the name of the individual, and organisation of persons engaged by them to undertake any or all of the fire risk assessment.
  • require that departing RPs must first take reasonable steps to share all relevant fire safety information with incoming RPs.
  • increase the level of fines from Level 3 (£1,000) to Level 5 (unlimited) for offences in relation to the impersonation of an inspector, failure to comply with specific requirements imposed by an inspector, and failure to comply with requirements relating to the installation of luminous tube signs.

More work is required to further develop policy in relation to fees and charges, false fire alarms, maintenance, the provision of information to residents and higher-risk workplace buildings. We will continue to consider the responses received to this consultation and engage with stakeholders to inform policy development in these areas

For more information please check out the full response here