Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service Protection Officers carry out regular audits of premises throughout Suffolk to ensure compliance with the legislation. Protection Officers have specific legal powers such as a right of entry and a right to require the production of relevant documents.
If it is considered that any duty under the legislation has not been complied with, formal action may be taken, such as the serving of an Alterations Notice or an Enforcement Notice. Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service will, on all occasions, exercise due care and consideration with regard to the use of our powers and, as far as is reasonably practicable, will ensure matters are addressed through legislation having primacy in the circumstances.
If Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service is of the opinion that the risk to life is so serious, a Prohibition Notice may be served to prohibit or restrict the use of premises.
It is an offence not to comply with the requirements of the legislation and Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service may prosecute where the circumstances require it.
An Alterations Notice may be served on the Responsible Person if the Fire and Rescue Authority is of the opinion that any significant alterations being made to the premises will constitute a serious risk to relevant persons (whether due to features of the premises, their use, and any hazard present or any other circumstances).
An Enforcement Notice may be served on the Responsible Person if the Fire and Rescue Authority is of the opinion that the Responsible Person, or other person mentioned in Article 5(3), has failed to comply with any provision of the Fire Safety Order.
A Prohibition Notice may be served on the Responsible Person where the Fire and Rescue Authority is of the opinion that the risk to persons, in case of fire, is so serious it will be necessary for the Authority to prohibit or restrict the use of all, or parts, of the premises until the specified matters have been remedied.
However, the main aim of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 is to encourage a risk assessed approach and to realise that there is often more than one way to achieve an acceptable level of fire safety.
The Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service Enforcement Policy Statement sets out the general policy and principles that you can expect the Service to follow. It provides guidance for inspections, businesses and members of the public and is intended to clearly set out the aims, standards and values that will be applied.
Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service aims to provide a consistently high quality service to the commercial/business community in relation to the enforcement of legislative fire safety, in accordance with the Enforcement Concordat as published by the Better Regulation Unit of the Cabinet Office. We will also take into account the Regulators Compliance Code which came into force in 2008 and the Principles of the Hampton Report 2005.
In accordance with the Environment and Safety Information Act 1988, local authorities are required to maintain a register of information concerning the issue of Prohibition, Restriction and Enforcement Notices. This register must be open to inspection by the public, free of charge.
Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service maintains a public register containing information relating to any Prohibition, Enforcement or Alterations Notices. Each entry states sufficient particulars to convey the substance of the notice to which it relates.
The Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service Public Register
Any enquiries regarding the Enforcement Policy Statement of the Public Register should be directed to the Suffolk Fire and Rescue Service Directorate Investigation Team on 01473 260588.