How to Investigate a Fire Alarm

Trained Fire Wardens should check their allocated areas for signs of a fire when clearing any rooms and/or floors and report any signs of fire to the person responsible for calling the fire and rescue service. 

  1. Ensure your building is evacuated in accordance with your evacuation procedure, before doing anything else.

  2. If there is no immediate sign of fire, then a managed and controlled investigation of the reason for the activation should take place by your trained Fire Wardens.

  3. Remember you're looking for signs of a fire and not a fire itself. If there's an obvious fire get out and call the fire and rescue service out on 999.

  4. Check the fire alarm panel to find where the alarm has activated – it's vital that you have a full zone or detector plan displayed immediately adjacent to the panel.

  5. Where possible, don't search for signs alone. Consider searching in pairs. Understand the construction of the building using protected routes and be aware of alternative fire exits.

  6.  Have another member of staff at the alarm panel and remain in contact with them (a mobile phone or short range radios are ideal for this purpose).

  7. When investigating look, listen and smell for signs of fire. It might be smoke, unusual noises or heat and could be any one, some, or all of those signs.

  8. Before opening a door feel it with the back of your hand, as high up the door as you can reach, for signs of heat. If it is hot do not open the door.

  9. If at any time you discover signs of fire, raise the alarm, get out using the nearest fire exit and call the fire service on 999.

  10. When the call to the fire service is made, clearly state that an investigation has taken place and this is a call to a FIRE and not just an alarm sounding