Fire service asks takeaway owners to keep staff and customers safe

Takeaways in East Sussex are being asked to read up on top tips aimed at keeping their staff and customers safe.

The call from East Sussex Fire and Rescue Services comes in the Chief Fire Officers Association’s UK Business Safety Week (September 5-11).

Andy Gausden, business safety manager, said: “We have lots of takeaways in our area and many are in older properties which make it harder to do things like plan escape routes.

“If you run a takeaway, we are here to help keep you, your employees and your customers safe. We have free training courses which people can come along to or they can contact us for advice.

“We have lots of information on our website too, including how to carry out the all important risk assessment. This can sound like a tricky task but it is vital to make sure it is carried out.”

CFOA President Paul Hancock said, “Business Safety Week is a reminder to businesses that fire and rescue services are here to offer advice and help on making the workplace safe from fire.

“We ask employers to make this a priority by contacting us if they haven’t addressed fire safety, reviewing arrangements and training staff regularly.

“Not complying with the law can lead to financial penalties or, if the worst happens, loss of livelihoods and lives.”

For more information, go to www.esfrs.org/business-safety/restaurants-and-takeaways/

Top Tips:

• Carry out a risk assessment – not only is it a legal requirement but it can save lives and livelihoods. It should consider the risk of fire breaking out and what measures you need to put in place to prevent it and keep people safe.

• If there is accommodation above the takeaway, the people living there need to be able to escape. Work out how they could get out if there was a fire in the takeaway.

• Train your staff so they know what to do in case of an emergency. A fire can be very frightening so having a plan you all know is important.

• Regularly clean your kitchen extraction and ventilation systems to reduce the risk of a fire.

Fires within the ductwork are very difficult to stop. Ductwork is often inaccessible, and fire may break out of the ductwork in other parts of the building.