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Fire Safety Regulations
...compliance in the work place
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Enforcement - some general information
General enforcement policy
The Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service will endeavour to ensure that any legislative requirements that are the responsibility of the Fire and Rescue Authority to enforce, are complied with.
Investigations carried out by Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service will be conducted in accordance with procedures set out in respect of the following legislation:-
Specific enforcement policies exist for each of the following:
What you are entitled to expect from enforcement officers
- A courteous manner.
- To be shown identification.
- Feedback on any visits, such as information about breaches of legislation and guidance on how they could be avoided.
- A clear distinction between what the officer is recommending as good practice and what you must do to comply with the law.
- To be given the reasons in writing for any action you are asked to take.
- Where there is an apparent breach of law, a notification of what the law is.
- Reasonable time to meet statutory requirements.
- Notification that the matter has been referred for legal action.
- To be advised of the procedures for appealing against Fire Authority action.
Enforcement options available
Dependent on the legislation involved, there are a number of enforcement options available. These include:
- Notification of fire safety deficiencies
- Action plans
- Alterations notices.
- Enforcement notices.
- Prohibition notices.
- Notices under Article 37 (Fire-fighter's switches for luminous tube signs)
Factors which affect choice of enforcement action
There are a number of factors which enforcement officers will consider when deciding which course of action to take:
- The seriousness of the alleged offence.
- The previous history of the party concerned
- The likelihood of the defendant being able to establish a satisfactory defence, eg. ‘due diligence’ and all reasonable precautions.
- The willingness of the party to prevent a recurrence of the problem.
- Whether there is satisfactory evidence.
- Any relevant explanation offered by the affected party.
- The probable public benefit of the action and the importance of the case, eg whether a prosecution might establish legal precedent in other companies or nationally.
The Fire and Rescue Authority will consider prosecution where for example, there is failure to comply with the fire safety duties imposed by the Order and that "failure has put one or more relevant persons at risk of death or serious injury in case of fire". (Article 32 (1) of the Order) In addition if there has been a failure to comply with any requirement or restriction imposed by a notice issued under the Order, then again consideration will be given to prosecution.