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Fire Risk Awareness

The Adults at Risk Training Programme (ARP)

Is a fire safety guide for those involved in the care of adults or children in the community. It lays down the minimum recommendations for the protection of adults and children who are at risk from fire.

There are many considerations to take into account when planning a care package that allows someone to continue living in the community with the extra support needed to ensure their safety and wellbeing. If fire safety is not considered, and the correct protection measures are not put in place, the person may not be safe in their home. Therefore, they will be at the greatest possible risk should a fire occur.

As part of the partnership approach being adopted, Adult Social Care and Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service can supply the following resources to support agency partners, families and the end user.

This training package is designed to enable you to work with Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service to protect vulnerable adults living in the community from the risks of fire. It has been designed for use by:

  • Domiciliary care workers
  • Carers
  • Adult & Children Social Care staff
  • Staff in any other organisation involved in care of people in their own homes

The aims of the Adults at Risk Programme

This course aims to highlight:

  • The increased risk of fire to vulnerable adults and children living in their own homes
  • Who is more at risk
  • The protection measures and additional equipment that is available
  • When to make a referral to the Fire Service
  • How to make a referral to the Fire Service

Booking Link –

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service – Safe and Well Check

You can refer a vulnerable person for a safe and well check that will be completed by a representative from the Fire and Rescue Service. Their home will be assessed for fire risk, with a view to fitting free smoke detector alarms if required. The Fire and Rescue Service will also discuss home escape plans and provide advice to lower fire risk.  To refer for a safe and well check please use the following online form: Agency Referral Form

Whilst consent is preferred for making a safe and well check referrals, where there is risk of harm to the individual or others the referral must be made without consent. This is on the basis of public or vital interests. Please ignore the fact that the current referral suggests consent must be obtained (RBFRS are resolving this issue). If you need to tick the consent box to submit the form, do so and include in the comments the rationale for not having consent and how public or vital interests threshold is met.

Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service – Threat of Arson Referral Procedure

If you have concerns about someone that has had a Threat of Arson made against them or their property or are at risk of arson please complete and return this form.

RBFRS will endeavour to attend the property (with consent of the occupant/victim, so please contact them first) within 48 hours. A Threat of Arson/Risk of Arson Safe and Well Visit will involve our Safe and Well Technicians or Crews attending the property to fit arson proof letter boxes, fire retardant sprays and as many smoke alarms as required.

Further information is provided in this guidance document

Fire Risks Associated with Types of Health Equipment

There have been several fire related incidents nationally, involving health associated equipment such as Oxygen cylinders, air flow pressure relieving mattresses and incontinence pads and these incidents have led to serious injuries and fatalities. Health Equipment and Fire Risk Report published by the London Fire Brigade provides useful advice.

Fire Risk with the use of Emollients

Emollients are moisturising treatments applied directly to the skin to soothe and hydrate it. They cover the skin with a protective film to trap in moisture. Emollients are not flammable in themselves; however, a fire risk occurs when they absorb into fabrics and then exposed to naked flames, or heat sources,  resulting in a fire that burns quickly and intensely, which can cause serious injury and even death. This flammability increases each time the fabric is contaminated with an emollient. Repeated washing of clothing, bandages, and bedding at any temperature, does not remove the fire risk. Both paraffin and non-paraffin emollients can act as an accelerant, when absorbed into clothing and exposed to naked flames or other heat sources. Over 60s who smoke and have reduced mobility, are those most at risk.

An awareness leaflet has been produced by the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service, you are asked to share as widely as possible.

Learning Material

  • Briefing note December 2022
  • Click here for a recording of the webinar on Self-Neglect and Fire Risk, presented by Neil Whitemann from the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service in November 2022. The webinar provides information and guidance of how to manage fire risk when working with individuals who may be at risk of fire at their homes due to hoarding behaviours.
  • Click here for the recording of the webinar on Arson Awareness, from the Royal Berkshire Fire Rescue Service in November 2022. Cases of arson linked to domestic abuse are on the increase, this session will improve the knowledge of staff regarding this issue.

For further information please visit the Royal Berkshire Fire and Rescue Service Website.