Wiser Environment looks at the development of Fire Prevention Plan guidance over the last twelve months.
Whilst there have been no formal updates to the Environment Agency’s Fire Prevention Plan (FPP) Guidance since it was published on the 29th July 2016, the detail required within an FPP sufficient to achieve approval is constantly evolving.
Approved deviations from the minimum operating standards detailed within the guidance are slowly starting to be accepted. Alternative methods of detection and suppression are now being accepted within approved FPPs. Other examples of deviations from the guidance include accepting larger waste ‘piles’ but with, in the event of a fire, the creation of fire breaks using mobile plant to prevent a fire spreading.
Another change since the FPP guidance was last updated include the disbanding of the centralised fire panel in March 2017, with fire panel members now providing a support role to local officers who will review and approve FPPs, once an initial assessment had been made by the national permitting team during the ‘duly making’ process.
During recent public events the EA has confirmed that, like the FPPs themselves, the guidance should be treated as ‘living document’ with regular meetings held with key members of the fire service to discuss how events occurring in the industry can assist in improvement the contents of the current guidance. It will be interesting to see how recent tragic events impact the FPP guidance with regard to the proximity of waste to the walls of buildings, and the resilience of the building itself to fire.
For more information about fire prevention plans and the EA guidance contact Wiser Environment on 01480 462 232.