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GMFRS supports Business Safety Week with roadshow event

Capture.JPGPROTECTION staff from Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service (GMFRS) are visiting businesses this week giving information and advice about fire safety as part of the first ever UK Business Safety Week.

The Community Event Vehicle and staff from across the Service are going on a safety roadshow to help businesses manage their risk, complete fire risk assessments and ensure business continuity plans are in place.

It’s all part of the Chief Fire Officers’ Association (CFOA) event, which runs from December 8 to 14.

Yesterday (Monday, December 8) teams visited businesses in Oldham, Bury and Rochdale and they will be out every day this week in other areas of Greater Manchester.

Chair of Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority, Councillor David Acton, said: “Our focus this week is to provide business continuity advice to small industrial businesses because these are the types of premises where we tend to get fires.

“They’re not necessarily life-risk incidents but a fire can seriously affect business if the owner doesn’t have a business continuity plan – so GMFRS wants to give advice and information to prevent businesses suffering the potential consequences of fire.

“Fire Protection Officers and Business Safety Advisors (BSA) will visit as many businesses as they can in five days – the BSAs have been extremely committed and have really stepped up to the mark to organise this event.”

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The damage caused at Almost Famous after a fire in June 2013

Business Safety Week has been scheduled to run at a time when many businesses will have additional fire risks – whether due to large amounts of extra stock, an increase in seasonal employees, or because they are preparing for a winter shutdown period.

Figures from “Fire Statistics Great Britain 2012 to 2013” show that over the ten years from 2002/03 to 2012/13 there were:

  •          12,645 fires in retail and vehicle trade premises resulting in 421 casualties, including ten fatalities;
  •          5,643 fires in restaurants, cafes, pubs, etc. resulting in 305 casualties, including five fatalities;
  •          2,984 fires in industrial premises resulting in 109 casualties, including two fatalities;
  •          1,973 fires in hotels, boarding houses, hostels, etc. resulting in 189 casualties, including four fatalities

Whilst the total number of fires in business premises has reduced over recent years, the cost of fire and the subsequent losses have been rising.

CFOA President Peter Dartford said: “During UK Business Safety Week fire services will be promoting the work that they do with businesses, helping them to effectively manage the fire safety of their organisations and safeguard their staff, premises and stock.

“But it’s not only commercial premises that can be at risk – reducing the potential for fire in buildings used for voluntary and community use is also a key objective of the week.

“Many communities may depend upon the support provided by organisations using a community centre, for example, so reminding the owners of these premises to re-consider their risks, especially at this time of year, will help protect the valuable services that these voluntary and charitable groups offer.”

Business can find fire safety information and advice on the GMFRS website here: http://www.manchesterfire.gov.uk/fire_safety_advice/business_fire_safety/

GMFRS will be tweeting top tips for businesses throughout the week using the hashtag #BSW14 

Last update: 23/03/2016 08:19:30
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