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Residential Fire Safety

Residential fire safety gives guidance around requirements for fire safety measures in multi-occupancy residential premises, high-rise blocks or buildings over 11 metres in height.

Introduction

In this section, we cover regulations and guidance for responsible persons, landlords and building owners related to fire safety for residential premises that are:

  • High-rise buildings
  • buildings 11 metres or taller
  • premises with more than one residential premises contained within - for example, a house converted into flats.

From January 23 2023, new regulations will come into force under Article 24 of the Fire Safety Order, which applies in England, and govern steps and guidance that a responsible person for a premises needs to take or follow to ensure fire safety in residential premises that meets the above specifications.

These regulations, introduced under article 24 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (Fire Safety Order), implement the majority of those recommendations made to the government in the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 report which require a change in the law.

The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022

The Fire Safety (England) Regulations 2022 (the Regulations) have been introduced as an important step towards implementing the recommendations of the Grenfell Tower Inquiry Phase 1 report. The Regulations are being introduced under Article 24 of the Fire Safety Order and will come into force on 23 January 2023.

The Regulations apply to England only. The Regulations can be found on the UK Government website.

Most of the requirements set out in the Regulations are imposed on the responsible person (RP), which RPs need to plan and prepare for ahead of the Regulations coming into force.

The regulations require RPs in multi-occupied residential buildings to take specific actions, depending on the height of the building

The basic requirements

Based on government guidance, we've outlined the steps below for each building type affected by the regulations and the regulations or steps that must be taken for that premises type. This is a basic representation only and we recommend responsible persons visit the government Regulations page for the full details. 

The Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation Tool is available via the button below.
Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation ToolFire Safety Regulations Fact SheetFire Safety Regulations Fact Sheet
Residential buildings with 2 or more domestic premises with common areas.
Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation Tool
Information to residents - fire safety instructions
Information to residents - fire doors*
Please note: fire door requirements differ for buildings above and below 11 metres in height.
Residential buildings between 11 metres and 17.9 metres in height.
Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation Tool
Information to residents - fire safety instructions
Information to residents - fire doors*
Fire door checks
Please note: fire door requirements differ for buildings above and below 11 metres in height.
Residential buildings above 18 metres in height.
Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation Tool
Information to residents - fire safety instructions
Information to residents - fire doors*
Fire door checks
Secure information box
Design and materials of external walls
Floor plans and building plan
Lifts and firefighting equipment
Wayfinding signage
Please note: fire door requirements differ for buildings above and below 11 metres in height.

More details

In high-rise residential buildings, responsible persons will be required to:

  • Building Plans: provide their local Fire and Rescue Service with up-to-date electronic building floor plans and to place a hard copy of these plans, alongside a single-page building plan which identifies key firefighting equipment, in a secure information box on site.
  • External Wall Systems: provide to their local Fire and Rescue Service information about the design and materials of a high-rise building’s external wall system and to inform the Fire and Rescue Service of any material changes to these walls. Also, they will be required to provide information in relation to the level of risk that the design and materials of the external wall structure gives rise to and any mitigating steps taken.
  • Lifts and other Key Fire-Fighting Equipment: undertake monthly checks on the operation of lifts intended for use by firefighters, and evacuation lifts in their building and check the functionality of other key pieces of firefighting equipment. They will also be required to report any defective lifts or equipment to their local Fire and Rescue Service as soon as possible after detection if the fault cannot be fixed within 24 hours, and to record the outcome of checks and make them available to residents.
  • Information Boxes: install and maintain a secure information box in their building. This box must contain the name and contact details of the Responsible Person and hard copies of the building floor plans.
  • Wayfinding Signage: to install signage visible in low light or smoky conditions that identifies flat and floor numbers in the stairwells of relevant buildings.

In residential buildings with storeys over 11 metres in height, responsible persons will be required to:

  • Fire Doors: undertake annual checks of flat entrance doors and quarterly checks of all fire doors in the common parts.

In all multi-occupied residential buildings with two or more sets of domestic premises, responsible persons will be required to:

  • Fire Safety Instructions: provide relevant fire safety instructions to their residents, which will include instructions on how to report a fire and any other instruction which sets out what a resident must do once a fire has occurred, based on the evacuation strategy for the building.
  • Fire Door Information: provide residents with information relating to the importance of fire doors in fire safety.

Further guidance

While we've put the basic regulations and requirements on this page, we've put together a range of links to official government guidance regulations and other pages on our website that will help responsible persons meet the requirements outlined above.

Fire Risk Assessment Prioritisation ToolFire Safety Regulations Fact SheetFire Safety (England) Regulations 2022
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