With constant footfall, regular cooking and many employees switching up on irregular shifts, hotels require a dedicated focus on fire safety, in order to keep everyone and the building safe at all times. If a fire breaks out in a hotel, many people will find themselves in danger. Hotel owners, managers and employees must recognise the importance of hotel fire safety, so as to prevent hundreds of people from an emergency.
To keep a hotel, its staff and visitors safe, regulations need to be in place to prevent a fire outbreak. A hotel fire can develop quickly and leave visitors feeling incredibly vulnerable, especially with hotels providing accommodation for overnight stays.
Common causes of hotel fires
A hotel kitchen is constantly cooking up a storm for guests dining in the evening or ordering room service in the early hours. Cooking equipment is one of the leading causes of fires in hotels, because of the continuous daily risk. Ensuring that the kitchen is clean and all fire equipment is accessible and tested is essential to keep the risks at a minimum.
There also runs a risk of some guests not knowing the safety etiquette expected by the hotel. Ensuring presence of clear fire safety signs throughout the hotel and in each room will help educate desks and limit risks, such as smoking indoors and leaving fire doors open.
Need for a hotel fire safety plan
Employees may feel panicked in an emergency. With a hotel fire safety plan, there is a clear understanding of the roles and responsibilities that are needed, in order to keep the building and its occupants safe for fire spread.
The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 requires those responsible to carry out a fire risk assessment of the building. With an effective fire risk assessment, hotel owners and staff can note any potential hazards in the hotel and how to prevent them.
It is also a legal requirement to provide fire safety training to all employees, so that they know the steps to take during a fire incident. This is especially important in a hotel, where different visitors are leaving and arriving every day.
Hotel fire risk assessment
A comprehensive fire risk assessment for hotels will include numerous areas and situations, where a fire could happen. These can include:
Hotel rooms – Any electrical equipment supplied in hotel rooms should be safety checked and tested annually. Having safety signs to make guests and employees aware of the dangers when using any appliances will help limit the risks.
Kitchens – The risk of fire in a hotel kitchen depends on several factors. A big hotel will have a larger kitchen with plenty of staff to supervise, whereas a smaller hotel may be limited to keeping an eye on the kitchen at all times.
Lobbies and hallways – Any communal areas need to be noted on the fire risk assessment, as they will be the main areas where footfall occurs. This is also where most fire equipment will be located.
Lifts – Lifts need to be considered in a fire risk assessment because they should not be permitted to be used, during a fire breakout.
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