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Fire Risk Assessment Cost

How much does a Fire Risk Assessment cost? 

There's no easy, simple answer to the question of Fire Risk Assessment cost, as each building and each business is unique.  Plus, we can only speak for Fire Safety Specialists as each assessor is different.  We aim for a base price of around £350 for a half day assessment and £500 for a full day.  90% of the jobs we do come with these two bounds.  Ones more expensive than this are typically very large properties such as big schools, hospitals, business centres, shopping centres or large blocks of flats.  With these we'd normally calculate the price as a number of days.

Sounds a bit expensive for just one guy turning up...

In the past it was common (even for us) to turn up and do the assessment in one day.  But now there are so many extra things that need to be completed that it takes about 30% longer than before.

  • Fire Risk Assessments must show all the findings and not just the "significant ones".  In simple terms the report must show all the items that were checked or assessed.  If it's not in the report, it's presumed it was not assessed or considered.  Previously some companies (not us) would just check a few fire doors and then presume the rest were fine, this is now not allowed.
  • The person doing the assessment must "...be regarded as competent <and> has sufficient training and experience or knowledge and other qualities ...".  So a Fire Risk Assessment report is judged not just on it's contents but also the capabilities of the person who created it.  So be a bit wary of any single assessor who claims to be proficient in multiple areas (fire extinguisher servicing, fire alarm servicing, asbestos, legionaries disease, general health & safety).
  • We have to identify all the Responsible People.  This could be the business owner, health & safety manager, landlord, letting agent, building or land owner, the person commissioning the Fire Risk Assessment or all of these and more.  We legally have to identify these people, get their contact information, document each's roles and responsibilities, the extent of their control (both managerially and the areas of the building), ensure that each is aware of the others, all relevant information is shared between them, and that a process is in place that if any new Responsible People are added or replaced then all relevant information is provided to them.
  • We go a bit beyond other companies and request all servicing paperwork in advance.  Items such as Gas Safe, EICR, PAT testing,  fire alarm panel, smoke/heat detectors, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting, smoke control systems (e.g. fire dampers), kitchen grease ducts, rising water mains etc.  This is so we can check that it's all in place, the business owner has dealt with any issues, and also that the contractor has properly documented the work they performed.
  • There is requirement that you are seen to be "...maintaining the fire safety..." of the building.  In short this means that between the annual Fire Risk Assessment you are checking various aspects of the building's fire safety.  The obvious ones are that you're doing a weekly fire alarm test and maybe a evacuation drill every 6 months.  But there are many more which must be documented.  We need to document these and set a frequency at which they should be checked.  Such as:
    • Checking that fire exit doors open freely
    • Corridors are not obstructed with rubbish or used as storage
    • Fire extinguishers are present and have the correct signage
    • Emergency lighting is checked using a simple light switch key
    • The exterior of the building is free for combustible materials which might lead to arson
    • The route to the assembly point is clear and well lit
  • The right number of people have been trained in either basic fire safety or to a fire warden/coordinator level.  What this number is depends on the type of business, the number of people in it on a daily basis and nature of the building.  For a simple office setup with 20 people it maybe 1-2 people is sufficient.  But for a large pub or restaurant then we might suggest that everyone has at least some training.
  • We'd invested tens of thousands of pounds in our own app based assessment tool, and continue to do so.  This is so we can be 30-40% more efficient overall.  So it's a saving to you overall but still a cost.

What else affects the Fire Risk Assessment cost?

The above Fire Risk Assessment cost is the base price for simple job near to where we are based, Sheffield.  Some other aspects which incur additional costs are:

  1. Travel.  Anything up to about 30 mins each way we'd probably just absorb that into the price.  Longer distances obviously cost more in fuel but also mean we are travelling when we could be doing other billable work.  So a full days job 5 mins down the road can often be cheaper than a 2 hour job when it's 3 hours travelling each way.  Nowadays 50p per mile is barely break even.
  2. Overnight.  We work really hard and 10-12 hour days are not unusual.  But we can't really expect our guys to do 12 hours work then drive 2-3 hours home whilst tired.  We are all about safety after all!  So unfortunately sometimes we have to factor in a hotel room at £100ish per night.
  3. Multiple jobs in one day.  Where we can we will group jobs together and bill them all as one day's work.  But we aren't supermen, have to be thorough and use the roads like everyone else.  So can we check 5-10 clamping pods or static caravans in one day - Yes!  Can we check 5 on one site then drive 2 hours to another site and check another 5, No!  Can we check 5 AirBNB lets in a day, Yes!  Can we do that if they are spread out all over the city, No!
  4. Fire Safety Training.  Budget about the same as a risk assessment if we are coming to your site to do it or about £50 per person if you're coming to us.
  5. Remedial works.  Often the Fire Risk Assessment will identify areas that have issues which need resolving.  This is absolutely fine, typical and exactly what you did the assessment to find out.  But, you cannot just sit on these findings and do nothing.  If your local Fire Service does an inspection and finds that you have not done anything thing then this is itself an offence.  But sometimes it's impossible, due to time, booking contractors or budgets to expect to get everything sorted immediately.  Even the Fire Service understands this.  So we can help you with a remedial plan whereby we list all the issues, how they are going to be resolved, when and by whom.  For simple admin type like this work we charge £50 per hour.
  6. Fire Strategy Document.  Sometimes the above remedial works on a building are extensive.  Yet the building use might have changed so much that a lot of the work is technically not required.  An example from us was a doctors surgery where 20ish fire doors all needed replacing at £1000ish each.  They were designated as fire doors when the building was built but now technically don't need to be fire doors.  But you cannot unilaterally just state that a door is now not a fire door, unless you also assess the fire safety of the entire building as well.  This is what a Fire Strategy Document does.  So with this example the client paid £1000-£2000 for the document and not £20,000 to fix the doors.  Though it's very rare that we even recommend these for existing buildings.
  7. Daily Checks App.  We mentioned above the need to be checking your building on a daily/weekly/monthly basis.  With sometimes dozens of things each with varying frequencies it can be a major task just working out what needs doing.  So we've built our own client facing app that shows you each day what to do and it also doubles as proof of your performing these checks.  We charge it out at £5 per month.  Alternatively you can use a paper based diary to do the same.  Just make sure it's not lost if you have a fire!
  8. Fire Emergency Plan.  This is a simple document detailing how fires are detected, raising the alarm, action staff should take, escape routes, where the assembly point is, what to do with fire extinguishers, Location of key safety hazards, list of trained staff, equipment required, variation to the plan, backup arrangements etc.  These are different from the Fire Action Notices you see on the walls.  But are a legal requirement.  Budget around £100 for one to be created
  9. Personal Emergency Evacuation Plans (PEEPs).  This is specific plan for a person with one or more disabilities. Tailor-made for one person in regard to where they can and cannot work, any assistance required in a fire emergency and a list of people responsible for their safety.  The common issue with doing these is you probably already employ people with some minor disabilities.  Yet they don't want people to know and it might be so suitable that no one notices.  Though you not even asking the question is an offence.  To get around this we get all your employees to complete an online questionnaire detailing any issues they might have.  Then if any flag up any disabilities we discuss with them the issues and come up with a plan.  The cost is £3 per person surveyed and £45 for each bespoke plan required.
  10. General Emergency Evacuation Plans (GEEPs)These are require if you let in the general public or you have a very transient workforce.  Focuses on visitors with any disability who may not be able to evacuate unaided and creates a plan which can be followed by employees.  Budget around £200 but this maybe more if your building is extensive or complicated in its layout.
  11. Fire Safety Information Pack.  If the building has 2 or more flats attached then your legally obliged to provide them with all relevant up to date fire safety information.  The cost of this is around £150.

Hopefully this explains what the approximate Fire Risk Assessment cost is.  As a final point, just be careful what you pay for.  Paying a low cost but then still being non-compliant is almost a waste of money.

If your not even sure if you need a Fire Risk Assessment, maybe check out our page on Does my business need a Fire Risk Assessment?.

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