Staffordshire Fire and Rescue Service is reminding local businesses of their fire safety responsibilities following a fire in Leek earlier in the month.
"We’d urge all local organisations and businesses to check they have the necessary plans in place and to run through them as a refresher and to see if they need updating."
Fire Safety Enforcement Officer, Mark Hall
The accidentally started fire in an antiques shop on Broad Street, Leek caused damage to both the shop and the flat located above.
Fire Safety Enforcement Officer, Mark Hall said: "The occupier in the flat above was very lucky as there was no fire warning system provided in the shop – he spotted smoke rising up through the floor and so immediately contacted us and evacuated. Had the incident occurred during sleeping hours then the smoke and heat from the fire would have spread further and the outcome could have been very different.
"All commercial premises are legally required to carry out a fire risk assessment and identify people at risk from a fire starting in their premises – which in this case included those living above the shop. They must then take steps to ensure that those people are suitably protected and warned of a fire starting. One way of achieving this is to provide smoke detection to the commercial premises, linked to a sounder in the domestic accommodation above.
"We’d urge all local organisations and businesses to check they have the necessary plans in place and to run through them as a refresher and to see if they need updating.
"We have been in contact with the owner of the business that had the fire earlier in the month and we will be pro-actively visiting commercial premises that have flats above to ensure they have the necessary risk assessments and plans in place."
Further information on fire risk assessment for commercial premises can be obtained from the dedicated business section on the Service’s website: www.staffordshirefire.gov.uk.