AXA UK plc

06/21/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 06/21/2024 04:06

AXA Commercial advises businesses to take action after fire brigade ends automatic alarm response

  • AXA Commercial says businesses need to review their fire risk assessment plans after London Fire Brigade announced it would end daytime response to automatic alarms from October
  • The force answered 52,000 false calls generated by automatic fire alarms over a 12-month period to March 2024

AXA Commercial is advising London businesses to review their fire risk assessments and staff training after London Fire Brigade (LFB) announced it would no longer respond to daytime activations of automatic fire alarms in most non-residential buildings from October. <_o3a_p>

In the year to March 2024, LFB attended 52,000 false calls generated by automatic fire alarms. From October, automatic calls won't be answered between 7am and 8.30pm in a bid to reduce the burden on the force's resources.

London Fire Brigade's decision is in line with many other fire and rescue services across the UK and it's crucial that London businesses are aware of the change. If there's a fire, employees need to know to dial 999 during the working day because there won't be an automatic response by the fire brigade like in the past.<_o3a_p>

The change will impact all businesses that have a remote connection to an alarm-receiving centre. It means their fire risk assessments will need to be updated and staff will require additional training to make sure they respond in the appropriate way in case of fire.

Dougie Barnett, Director of Customer Risk Management at AXA Commercial

Dougie said there were several areas businesses should focus on to prepare for the change:<_o3a_p>

  • Updating fire risk assessments and staff training, with a particular emphasis on actions employees should take in the event of a fire alarm sounding during working hours. Where there is shift work, specific guidance should be provided for action required during response and non-response periods <_o3a_p>
  • Ensuring that staff understand the need to dial 999 in event of a fire to report the incident to the fire service. Individual employees should be given responsibility for the action required<_o3a_p>
  • Establishing an early identification system when the fire alarm is activated to determine if it is a false alarm or an actual fire that requires the premises to be evacuated and fire brigade called<_o3a_p>
  • Delivering training to the relevant staff so they understand messages displayed on the fire alarm panel to assist with early identification of which detector has been activated within the premises <_o3a_p>
  • Ensuring that the fire alarm system has been regularly maintained by a competent contractor to prevent false alarms. Where the alarm signalling is connected to the BT RedCare system, early action should be taken to find an alternative alarm-receiving supplier before this service is withdrawn in August 2025

This will be a significant change for London businesses that will impact their fire risk assessments. It's important they prepare now and put plans in place so employees have the required training and knowledge before it comes into force.

Dougie Barnett

LFB will continue to respond to automatic alarms between the hours of 8.30pm and 7am. Full details can be found on the LFB website here. Further information about the closure of the BT Redcare alarm signalling system can be found here.<_o3a_p>

Share this article:

Media contacts

If you are a journalist and would like to contact AXA

Email: [email protected]

Legal notes

About AXA UK

AXA Insurance UK plc registered in England and Wales under registered number 078950 and authorised by the Prudential Regulation Authority and regulated by the Prudential Regulation Authority and the Financial Conduct Authority under Financial Conduct Authority registration number 202312. Registered office is 20 Gracechurch Street, London, EC3V 0BG.

AXA UK is part of the AXA Group, a worldwide leader in insurance and asset management, with 147,000 employees serving 94 million clients in 50 countries. In 2023, IFRS revenues amounted to Euro 102.7 billion and underlying earnings to Euro 7.6 billion. AXA had Euro 844 billion in assets under management as of December 31, 2023.

In the UK & Ireland, AXA operates through a number of business units including: AXA Insurance, AXA Health and AXA Ireland. AXA UK & Ireland employs around 10,000 staff.

Important legal information and cautionary statements concering forward-looking statements

Certain statements contained herein may be forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, statements that are predictions of or indicate future events, trends, plans, expectations or objectives. Undue reliance should not be placed on such statements because, by their nature, they are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties and can be affected by other factors that could cause AXA's actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward looking statements. Please refer to Part 5: "Risk Factors and Risk Management" of AXA's Universal Registration Document 2022, for a description of certain important factors, risks and uncertainties that may affect AXA's business and / or results of operations. AXA undertakes no obligation to publicly update or revise any of these forward-looking statements, whether to reflect new information, future events or circumstances or otherwise, except as required by applicable laws and regulations.