As the Christmas celebrations begin many nightclubs and restaurants will be getting ready for an increased amount of merrymakers. Most will be decorated in a variety of colourful Christmas decorations and party goers will be looking forward to a fun, safe and enjoyable time. The last thing any business wants is for a fire or other emergency to claim lives and injure loved ones. Devon & Somerset Fire & Rescue Service are urging premises, managers and licensees to review their fire safety procedures to prevent such incidents, especially at this festive time when premises will be fuller than usual. Nightclubs are a place for fun, dancing, drinking and celebration but they can quickly turn into deadly fire traps. The main causes are often due to: overcrowding locked exits flammable decorative construction materials We would like to remind all licenced premises owners and managers that they should ensure that the materials used in the furnishing and decoration of their premises must meet with minimum fire resisting standards. The use of furnishings and other materials which are easily ignited or have rapid spread of flame characteristics should be avoided. Points to remember when furnishing and decorating a public venue Use materials that are either non-combustible of durably or inherently flame retardant. Any fabrics used in escape routes, other than foyers, entertainment areas or function rooms should be non-combustible. Drapes and curtains should not be provided across escape routes or exits. Materials treated with flame-retardant treatments may have a limited wash life before the effectiveness of the flame-retardant is diminished. To maintain the protection you should follow the manufacturerâs/suppliers instructions. Similarly, scenery and properties used for stage presentations often comprise combustible materials, take particular care with their use and, in particular, when they are on an open stage, only use materials which are known to be non-combustible. Upholstered seating, carpets and other textile floor coverings and underlays should be resistant to ignition. Further information on fire safety in licenced premises can be found on the our website Safety at work and other places. The relevant guides for licenced premises are either Fire Safety Risk Assessment: Small and Medium Places of Assembly (holding 300 persons or less) or Fire Safety Risk Assessment: Large Places of Assembly (holding more than 300 persons). Ensure that everyone has a safe and happy time when celebrating this Christmas and New Year.
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