which will simplify the law for thousands of businesses while placing
a greater focus on prevention has now been agreed by parliament.
fire legislation. At present fire safety laws are scattered across
more than 70 pieces of legislation.
It also improves fire safety by placing the responsibility for fire
safety on the employer or 'responsible person' for that building or
premises. He or she will be required to assess the risks of fire and
take steps to reduce or remove them.
In addition, businesses will no longer need a fire certificate -
though fire and rescue authorities will still continue to inspect
premises and ensure adequate fire precautions are in place.
Fire and rescue service minister Jim Fitzpatrick said:
'The reform of fire safety legislation will improve public safety by
placing a greater focus on fire prevention. It is also good for
business and the Fire and Rescue Service as it will make fire safety
legislation easier to understand.
'We have worked with representatives from business, the fire and
rescue service, trade unions and other bodies in bringing forward
this change - the largest single reform of fire safety legislation in
over 30 years.
'But, its completion through parliament is not the end. We'll now
work with our partners to produce guidance to assist businesses in
meeting the legal requirements of the order before it comes into
force next April.'
The Regulatory Reform Fire Safety Order is the largest order to be
brought forward under the Regulatory Reform Act and the changes have
been subject to extensive consultation. It is intended that the
guidance documents will be available early in 2006.
The reform applies to England and Wales.
1. Consultation on the reform of fire safety legislation, which
included all major stakeholders such as CFOA and the unions took
place in 2002.
2. The reform repeals the Fire Precautions Act 1971 and amends or
removes wherever possible the many other provisions dealing with fire
safety contained in other legislation.
3. It was implemented under the Regulatory Reform Act. This Act was
intended to allow ministers to reform over-complex regulatory
4. The order was laid before parliament on 10 May 2004 and since then
has been subject to parliamentary scrutiny. The order was approved by
the House of Commons on 24 May 2005 and by the House of Lords on 7