The Business Show 2018

DB Fire Safety Limited are proud to be exhibiting at The Business Show 2018.

This exhibition is being held at the ExCel, London on Wednesday & Thursday 16th & 17th, May.

The Business Show is the biggest business event in Europe with over 350 exhibitors and 250 speakers. It offers ideal opportunities for business owners to pick up tips and insights into the best practices required to ensure your business is successful.

David Black from DB Fire Safety Limited will be available, on stand 168, to provide advice on the appropriate fire safety measures required under fire safety legislation. He is already looking forward to meeting many existing and new business owners.

If you wish to contact David prior to the show, you can call him on 0800 772 0559; or email


The Dementia Care & Nursing Home Expo 2018

DB Fire Safety Limited are delighted to be exhibiting at The Dementia Care & Nursing Home Expo 2018. This is being held on the 25th & 26th April at the NEC, Birmingham.

We invite any and al those responsible for fire safety in their places of work to visit us on our stand 13032.

Looking forward to having many interesting discussions and meeting you all.

Fire Safety in Blocks of Flats

Since the appalling tragedy at Grenfell Tower, there has been a great deal of discussion about fire safety in blocks of flats. These discussions have placed great emphasis  around the use of cladding to the exterior walls of buildings. Whilst this is, quite naturally, an important issue, David Black, of DB Fire Safety Ltd, believes that there are other important considerations when assessing the level of fire safety in a block of flats.

DB Fire Safety are involved heavily with building contractors converting disused office buildings into blocks of residential flats. David, therefore, has great experience in helping to develop the appropriate fire strategies and on-goiung fire risk assessments of such buildings.

The general rule is that all flats must be contained within a one-hour fire resisting border. This means that floors, ceilings and walls are of a substantial construction. It also means that if a partition wall is designed to provide one-hour fire separation, any door within that wall must also be fire-rated to 60 minutes. In addition, all fire doors must be installed using appropriately fire-resisting hinges. Entrance doors to flats should be installed with a suitable self-closing device; and intumescent strips & cold smoke seals must be rebated into either the door or the door frame. They should also be fitted with a single thumb-turn device to enable prompt and safe evacuation in the event of a fire emergency.

David also believes that all blocks of flats should have the benefit of a fire detection & alarm system with automatic fire detection throughout the common escape routes but also with a heat detector immediately inside the entrance to all flats. He also believes that manual alarm call points should be installed at appropriate locations throughout the building. All this will enable residents to easily raise an alarm in the event of a fire emergency (so alerting all occupants of the building immediately); it will also provide alerts to all occupants in the event of a fire occurring in an unoccupied flat.

Other considerations include the need for a smoke extraction system that will allow all escape routes to be clear of smoke and so provide reasonable visibility in the event of a need to evacuate the building.

Finally, David believes that procedures issued to residents in a block of flats should include the instruction to evacuate from the building if it is safe to do so. In other words, only to remain within the flat if evacuation from the building is impeded by the fire itself.

If you wish to discuss areas in which DB Fire Safety can be of assistance to you or your business, then please call 0800 772 0559 OR Email:

FPA Member                                                                                     

Fire Risk Assessments and Fire Safety in Your Premises

Do you realise that you might be responsible for fire safety in your premises. The Fire Safety Order 2005 requires that all businesses appoint a ‘Responsible Person‘ for their premises. Regardless of how small the business may be this is a statutory requirement.. In general it would be the business owner, but it might also be the manager of the premises.

The starting point for all business owners and building managers is to carry out a suitable and sufficient fire risk assessment. The Responsible Person must ensure that all persons who might be on their premises would be safe and protected in the event of a fire emergency. Consideration must be taken of visitors as well as staff

A great deal of attention is currently being placed on the cladding installed on the outside of high-rise buildings. However, the fire safety provision inside your premises is likely to be of greater importance in the initial stages of any fire. It is critically important that all persons who might be on your premises can evacuate promptly and safely within secure and protected escape routes.

This is the reason why it is a statutory requirement to assess the potential causes of fire, the potential risks that could allow a fire to develop and spread, and the control measures you have in place.

Areas that must be included in any fire risk assessment include:

  • sufficient provision of, and correct installation of, fire doors
  • electrical testing
  • fire partition walls
  • suitable means to raise a fire alarm
  • accountability for all persons
  • an appropriate fire strategy

David Black of DB Fire Safety Limited is hosting a seminar on Friday 30th June entitled ‘Fire Safety & Your Fire Risk Assessment’. This seminar, which is FREE to attend, will provide business owners and property managers with the relevant information and tools to fully understand the fire hazards and risks that are likely to be present in their premises. It will also provide the necessary tools for owners of small businesses to carry out their own fire risk assessments.

The seminar will help you understand the importance of fire safety in your premises and will run from 10:00 – 12:00 with tea/coffee on arrival from 09:30

To register for your FREE tickets please go on the attached Eventbrite link.


Fire Safety Training and Induction Training

Legislation requires that all employers provide appropriate health & safety training to all staff. This includes providing fire safety training instruction as part of the induction program for all new members of staff.  Ideally, all health & safety and fire safety induction training should take place on the first day of employment. Good practice is to include fire safety procedures within the Company Staff Handbook (if provided).

As a minimum, the fire safety training, provided as part of general induction, should include a tour of the premises to identify the following:

1. The location of all fire alarm call points and instruction on how to activate them

2. The location of all fire exits and instruction on how to open them

3. The location of the Assembly Point in the event of an emergency evacuation

4.Instruction in the company’s documented procedures to be followed in the event of either discovering a fire, or hearing the fire alarm.

In addition to the above, it is generally considered to be beneficial to provide all staff with training/instruction in general fire safety awareness. If staff are aware of the fire hazards and risks in their areas of work, they can help prevent a fire from occurring in the first place. Probably a good idea!!!

It may also be appropriate to appoint specific individuals as Fire Marshals or Wardens; to have particular responsibilities in the event of a fire (more information on this will be in my next blog).

DB Fire Safety Limited offers training courses in all aspects of fire safety including: Fire Safety Awareness and Fire Warden Training. We also provide specialist training to staff working in Residential Care Homes (more information on this will be in a future blog).

For more information call 0800 772 0559 OR Email

Fire Safety at Christmas

As we approach Christmas, it is important to bear in mind that the number of fires in the home increase. There are a number of reasons why this happens. Therefore it is important to take even greater care of your fire safety at Christmas than would normally be the case. This blog highlights the hazards around Christmas trees and decorations as well as the importance of your smoke detectors.


Christmas tree lights, however small, emit a level of heat and have been known to cause both natural and artificial Christmas trees to catch fire. So; remember to turn the lights off before retiring to bed at night.  If you are going out to a party or event, it is probably a good idea to turn them off before going out.

Don’t hang paper decorations too close to lights or any other potential sources of heat. These could easily catch fire; and it doesn’t take long for a small fire in a living room to develop into a major incident.


Another piece of advice is to check your smoke detectors. These will give you early warning of any fire; so this is a good time of the year to ensure they are operating and, if necessary, install fresh batteries. Best practice is to have a heat detector in the kitchen; a smoke detector in the living room (or the room in which the Christmas tree is located); with an additional smoke detector at the top of the stairs.


The video attached lasts about ten minutes; however, it is well worth watching. Simply click on the link and feel free to copy or send it to your friends or anyone else you think might benefit from watching the video.

Have a very enjoyable and safe Christmas.

Best Wishes,

David Black – Director, DB Fire Safety Limited

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Fire Risk Assessment for Block of Flats in Peterborough

DB Fire Safety Ltd are involved in carrying out the fire risk assessment on a multi-storey building in Peterborough that’s recently been converted from offices into flats.

Fire safety design in new blocks of flats is governed
by the Building Regulations 2010.  This legislation requires that landlords carry out fire risk assessments in all common areas of properties which will identify any fire hazards and who could be potentially at risk.

Blocks of flats differ from other residential dwellings in respect of fire risk assessments.  Because there are more people living in a block of flats, they will experience more fires than people living in houses.  However, a fire in a block of flats is no more dangerous than in a house.  High rise, therefore, does not mean high risk.


• To keep fire risk to a minimum, it is just as important to prevent fires as to provide
measures to protect people when fire occurs.
• The most significant influences on fire risk are social and lifestyle factors and advanced
age, not the type of dwelling in which people live.
• All dwellings should have working smoke alarms.
• Very few people die as a result of a fire in a neighbour’s flat or the common parts. Nearly all
fire deaths occur in the flat in which fire starts.
• In blocks of flats, each flat is designed to be a fire-resisting ‘box’. It is important to maintain
the integrity of this compartment, particularly when building work and alterations take place.
• It is important to ensure that fires cannot start in the common parts or common facilities.

Given that most fires occur in domestic dwellings, it was recognised
that a block of flats as a building containing many such dwellings –
has the potential for a higher risk to people should a fire break out.
Accordingly, the fire safety standards that were developed to address
this risk sought to afford the same level of safety found in houses to
those living in blocks of flats.
At the very least you should ensure that there is an adequate means
of escape in case of fire, and landlords of shared and Houses in
Multiple Occupation (HMO) properties will have additional obligations,
both under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order (2005) and the
Housing Act 2004.
Just like employers, landlords have certain obligations when it comes
to fire safety and protection in their properties. However, it is not as
simple as ensuring there is a couple of fire extinguishers to hand – fire
safety largely depends on the potential risks and the different types of
buildings can cause confusion. For example, a building that is used for
a single tenancy will differ to one which is shared across commercial and residential lettings


This is the basis for the ‘stay put’ principle (discussed later in this guide): when a fire
occurs within one dwelling (or, less likely, in the common parts), it is normally safe for
other residents to remain within their own flat. This principle is undoubtedly successful
in an overwhelming number of fires in blocks of flats. In 2009-2010, of over 8,000 fires
in these blocks, only 22 fires necessitated evacuation of more than five people with the
assistance of the fire and rescue service5.

The assessment of risk from fire also needs to take social factors into account,
particularly in the case of accommodation provided specifically for certain highrisk

While escape within flats is based on similar principles to those for houses, reaching
ultimate safety relies on using the common parts.
• Most blocks of flats are designed on the ‘stay put’ principle. Although this relies on there
being effective compartmentation, it is a principle that should be adopted wherever
• Provided there is effective compartmentation and means of escape, ‘general needs’ blocks
of flats will not normally require a communal fire alarm system.
• Communal fire alarm systems should not be installed unless it can be demonstrated that
there is no other practicable way of ensuring an adequate level of safety. If such a system
is provided, it must be possible to manage it.
• However, it should not automatically be assumed that constructional standards will be
inadequate in the absence of evidence to that effect.
• Proposals to upgrade fire protection in an existing block should aim to ensure, or restore, a
satisfactory standard of compartmentation in order to maintain the original ‘stay put’ policy.
• More generally, application of current benchmark standards to an existing block of flats is
not normally appropriate.
• Certain developments in fire safety technology and practice (eg smoke alarms within flats)
should be adopted. However, other developments such as automatic suppression systems
will only be appropriate if the cost and effort of adopting them is proportionate to the risk.

Front doors to flats need to be fire-resisting and self-closing.
• Corridors leading to stairways need to be enclosed in fire-resisting construction.
• Where there is only escape in one direction along a corridor, the extent of travel in such
‘dead ends’ needs to be limited.
• Open decks and balconies need to be limited in extent if escape is only possible in one
direction, with fire-resisting construction to protect people passing other flats to reach a
• Stairways need to be enclosed in fire-resisting construction, with fire-resisting, selfclosing
• Any external stairways need to be suitably separated from the building by fire-resisting
construction and doors.
• Any areas, rooms or risers opening onto communal escape corridors and stairways
need to be fitted with fire-resisting doors that are self-closing or kept locked shut.
• Arrangements for maintaining stairways clear of smoke need to be provided (through
means such as openable windows and vents).
• Additional protection is needed where there is only a single stairway for normal access
and for egress in an emergency, normally comprising lobby approach and permanent
openings or automatically opening vents for clearing smoke.
16.11 Older people and people with certain disabilities may require particular consideration

David Black, the Managing Director of DB Fire Safety Ltd has been involved with this project from its outset, and says that now the building is ready for occupation.

For information on how DB Fire Safety Ltd can help with your fire risk assessment; call 0800 772 0559 OR