How do you become a Fire Risk Assessor?

Posted on 24 April 2023

Fire Risk Assessors are responsible for assessing buildings and structures to determine the likelihood of a fire occurring, as well as assessing any potential damages that may occur in the event of a fire. Additionally, they make recommendations on how to mitigate fire risks and improve overall fire safety.

Before 2006, it was accepted that people were able to carry out their own fire risk assessments, however, since then the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 has changed fire risk assessment requirements significantly. This reform law requires that a ‘suitable and sufficient’ person carries out any fire risk assessments for all non-domestic premises. Moreover, it is recommended that fire risk assessments for domestic premises are also carried out in the same way.

Under the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005, a suitable fire risk assessment can only be carried out by a competent person.

Who is classed as a ‘Competent Person‘?

Article 18 of the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 states that a competent person is an individual who has adequate training and experience or knowledge, as well as other qualities, that qualify them to properly carry out the preventative and protective measures involved in a fire risk assessment.

What do you need to become a Fire Risk Assessor?

Obtain relevant qualifications and experience
A fire risk assessor must have a concrete understanding of the current fire safety regulations and standards. This knowledge can be obtained by taking relevant courses and attaining certifications. Below are some examples of third-party accreditation and membership providers:

·      The Fire Industry Associations
·      The Fire Protection Association
·      BAFE
·      The Institute of Fire Safety Managers
·      The Institution of Fire Engineers
·      Nationally Accredited Fire Risk Assessors Register

To further your career as a fire risk assessor, it is important to gain experience. This will help to establish you as a trusted fire risk assessment provider, improve your confidence and competence when carrying out fire risk assessments and ensure that you are working on different types of premises.

Understand the rule and regulations associated with Fire Risk Assessments

Depending on the country that you are working in, laws will set out the legal requirements for fire safety regulations. In the UK, these legal requirements are set out by the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 for all non-domestic premises.

To ensure that you are competent, it is essential that you understand these rules and regulations. This helps to guarantee that you are doing everything required to keep the premises and people safe as well as protect you from any potential penalties.

If the responsible person for the premises does not follow these regulations and fails to obtain a fire risk assessment, they can be fined up to £5000 or spend up to 2 years in prison.

Keep up to date with any industry developments 

Fire safety regulations like those mentioned above are consistently evolving to ensure that they set out the safest practices possible. As a fire risk assessor, it is important that you keep up to date with these developments. This may include attending conferences, partaking in yearly audits and regularly checking industry-related publications.

Master Key Skills

Whilst technical knowledge is important, there are several key skills that are essential for fire risk assessors to have.

For example, good verbal and written communication skills. Written communication skills are utilised when writing a fire safety report and verbal communication skills are needed when communicating complex fire safety concepts and for effective communication with clients and colleagues.

Other necessary skills include:
·      Attention to detail to ensure that you are not overlooking any crucial safety details
·      Problem-solving skills are essential to make sure that you come up with creative solutions to mitigate fire safety risks
·      Excellent organisational skills and the ability to prioritise your workload to meet agreed deadlines
·      Good use of initiative that will allow you to work independently
·      The drive to understand additional technical elements of fire such as heat transfer and smoke behaviour principles in enclosed environments

Determine whether to specialise or not

Once you have your core qualifications and training, a final step in becoming a competent fire risk assessor may be to decide if you would like to specialise. It is useful to be versatile and offer fire risk assessments for all types of buildings but there is the option to specialise in the types of fire risk assessments that you offer.

For example, you may choose to specialise in HMO fire risk assessments for landlords. This will allow you to focus on skills that are specific to that type of premises and create a consistent portfolio that establishes you as an expert in that particular area.


Becoming a successful fire risk assessor requires a combination of technical knowledge, relevant skills, and obtaining qualifications. Staying up to date with industry developments and gaining experience will establish you as a trusted fire risk assessor and will help to keep our buildings as safe as possible from fire.

As a BAFE SP205 Certificated Organisation, Pyro Fire Services are third-party accredited to provide fire risk assessments. If you would like more information on our services, please contact us.

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We’re on a mission to mitigate risk by pioneering new standards in competence and technology to protect more buildings and people. Maintaining our key accreditations are just one of the ways we do this.