The National Fire Safety lead at NHSE/I explains how NHS Trusts can review their fire alarm systems and implement effective protocols to ensure that risk reduction in this area meets statutory requirements.
Mazin Daoud, National Fire Safety lead at NHS England and NHS Improvement, explains how NHS Trusts can review their current fire alarm systems and implement effective protocols to ensure that risk reduction in this area meets statutory requirements, and the steps that NHSE/NHSI are taking to bring the HTM guidance on the subject up to date.
How we interact with fire alarm systems has been changing, both in our response to fire alarms (and false alarms), and in our testing and maintenance of them. The change is occurring on the ground in hospitals, where pragmatic, risk-assessed, evidence-backed procedures and protocols are being introduced by forward-looking Trusts, often with the support of the fire and rescue service. The pandemic has taught us that we can do things differently, for instance highlighting that infection control requirements in hospitals require a completely different environment from other commercial premises. However, the current ‘go-to document’ for healthcare fire safety policy and procedures, Firecode (Health Technical Memoranda 05 series), has not kept pace with developments in practice around the maintenance of fire alarm systems or identification of false alarms.
This article thus sets out to:
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