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Fire retardency in prisons

Guest PaulSull

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Guest PaulSull

I am trying to find out more information about how the regulations for fire retardency for bedding might apply to prisons.

At present the bedding supplied to prisoners by prisons meets the required level but there has been no requirement on prisoners who buy their own bedding to meet the same fire standards, therefore their bought bedding would meet domestic regulations.

The Prison Service is now telling prisoners that the law says they must get rid of any personal bedding that does not meet crib 7 and re-purchase (at high cost) new bedding which does meet this level.

Could you please tell me if there has been a recent change in the law to spur this demand, and in such an establishment as a prison would the law require the prisoners' own property to meet commercial standards; it seems that somebody visiting a hotel would not have any additional towels or bedding they take with them inspected for compliance.



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Prisons are subject to the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 and the guidance document is "Fire Safety Risk Assessment - Healthcare premises". Prisons were previously included in “Other sleeping accommodation” but are now included in the “Hospitals” category as the fire frequency in prisons is more similar to that of hospitals. The figures for these two categories have therefore changed. Youth Offending Institutes and Immigration Detention Centres should also be included in this category.

Check out page 54 of the guide, Textiles and furniture, the first line states “The use of flame-retardant bedding and furnishings will substantially reduce the fire risk”. The Responsible Person (Prison Service) has used this guidance in there fire risk assessment. They cannot use the domestic standard because a prison is a none-domestic premises so they have used the contract standard. For more information on this go to http://www.fira.co.uk/ , register with them, it’s free and download the “Fire safety of furniture and furnishings in the contract and non-domestic sectors A Guide to the UK requirements” for more detailed information.

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