Our protection work is all about protecting life and property, making businesses and the economy stronger, and communities safer.

We inspect high-risk and tall buildings, including residential flats, hospitals, schools and vulnerable businesses, to keep safe and reassure the people who live and work there.

We also advise companies on fire safety legislation, to keep their staff and customers safe and help their businesses to grow.

Our ‘Safe and Strong’ visits include advice on how to prevent a fire (including arson) happening in the first place, to protect your staff, buildings and contents.
We’ll also signpost you to helpful; and free business continuity resources.

And we work with other regulators and partner agencies to support major developments and events.

Our specialist fire safety officers are supported by our business support officers and firefighters. We work with the owners and managers of tall buildings to ensure that the new Fire Safety Bill and guidance is understood and acted upon.

If you’re responsible for fire safety in a building, it’s important you understand and stay within the law. We do our very best to advise on where improvements can be made. But we do take enforcement action if necessary.

Our Business Support Vehicles help to bring down the number of unnecessary fire alarms and the disruption they cause. This is complemented by our staff in Fire Control using a system known as ‘call challenge’ to check whether or not we actually need to respond, or if it’s a false alarm.

With our partners – local, regional and national – we work to influence the development of new legislation.

In 2020/21 we recorded 339 accidental fires in non-domestic properties. We attended 5,653 false alarms caused by fire alarm systems and we carried out 2,214 ‘Safe and Strong’ visits.

Our protection priorities:

  • we will protect life and property by targeting high-risk buildingsand vulnerable businesses though an advice,compliance and enforcement approach to fire safety legislation, with a focus on residential tall buildings
  • we will continuously improve our community safety outcomes by implementing the learning from independent and sector-led reviews
  • we will improve community safety through innovative and smarter approaches, using digital technology to enhance the delivery of protection activities
  • we will assist in the restoration of economic growth through prevention, education and support to businesses, including collaboration with other regulators and partner agencies
  • we will develop and adopt innovative approaches to reduce disruption to businesses, communities and West Midlands Fire Service caused by unwanted fire signals.
A red box with Accidental non-domestic fires in 2020/21, followed by 339, written on it.

In 2020/2021 there were 339 accidental fires in non-domestic properties.

A graphic of our business support vehicle with a 3 overlaid

We have three vehicles and a team dedicated to bringing down the number of ‘unwanted fire signals’ from automatic fire alarms.

Graphic of a fire alarm call point with 5,653 false alarms written in it

We attended 5653 false alarms caused by fire alarms systems.

Safe and Strong

In 2020/21 we carried out 2,214 ‘Safe and Strong’ visits providing advice to businesses regarding fire prevention and protecting staff, buildings and contents. 

Anyone with any degree of control over premises is responsible for the safety of anyone who may be affected by a fire. You can be fined or jailed if you don’t ensure people’s safety. 

It’s our business to help businesses and other organisations keep their staff, residents, visitors and buildings safe from fire.  

We do our very best to give clear advice, and to identify where improvements can be made. 

However, in the most serious incidents we take enforcement action or we may issue a Simple Caution which is kept on record by our Fire Authority for two years. 

A number of fire risk assessment guides are available online at www.gov.uk. 

The results of a suitable and sufficient risk assessment will help you to:

  • identify any fire hazards
  • reduce the risk of hazards causing harm
  • decide what physical fire precautions and management arrangements are necessary to ensure people’s safety if there’s a fire. 
A graphic representing a Safe and Strong visit showing 2214 visits done.

Business Support Vehicles

Fire alarms going off when there’s no fire can cost your business money.

They can also mean our firefighters responding unnecessarily when they might be needed for a real emergency somewhere else.

We have three vehicles and a team dedicated to bringing down the number of ‘unwanted fire signals’ from automatic fire alarms, through business engagement, education and support.