Fire Warden Training – Can Anyone Be A Fire Warden?
An essential part of ensuring your compliance with AS3745:2010 Planning for Emergencies in Facilities is training your wardens in how to respond to the event of a fire. But can anyone be designated as a warden? If not, who should be designated as a fire warden? And what is the role of a fire warden? This blog post will answer these questions and provide guidance on how to conduct fire warden training to ensure a confident response to fire emergencies in your facility.
Table of Contents
- What is a fire warden and what are their responsibilities?
- Who can become a fire warden?
- What is fire warden training and who should attend it?
- What are the benefits of having fire wardens?
The dangers of fire and the importance of evacuation training
During fire emergencies, fire wardens are responsible for guiding occupants to safety, and to following the facility’s emergency management plan. Wardens are mostly easily identified by the red Warden cap, helmet or vest that they are required to wear once an emergency has become identified.
Fire warden responsibilities include:
- Making sure that fire doors and smoke doors are properly closed, so that fires do not spread throughout a building.
- Search the designated floor or area to check all occupants are accounted for before and during an evacuation.
- Provide instructions to occupants to create orderly movement while evacuating to the assembly area.
- Assist mobility impaired persons during evacuations.
- Operate first attack fire-fighting equipment including: portable fire extinguishers, hose reels & fire blankets.
How to develop a fire evacuation plan for your facility
Fire wardens can be anyone in your facility who have either requested to join and been accepted or been chosen previously to be a part of a facility’s Emergency Control Organisation (ECO). This individual must then undergo the necessary fire warden training that will qualify them to be prepared to lead occupants during a fire emergency.
Qualities that generally make a good fire warden include:
- Familiarity with the facility that they are in, occupants who inhabit the facility regularly and have a good understanding of the locations of emergency exits without the need to look at an emergency evacuation diagram.
- A high tolerance for stress and being able to make decisions quickly yet rationally when presented with an emergency.
- Excellent communication skills that allow them to explain to occupants clearly but succinctly what is required of them during emergencies.
Implementing the fire evacuation plan
Fire warden training is the collection of learning courses, materials and resources which once completed and understood prepare an occupant within your facility for accepting the responsibilities outlined above to become a fire warden.
Generally, fire warden training will include:
- Planning for all emergency types
- Understanding the Emergency Control Organisation structure
- Warden roles and responsibilities
- Alarm systems and assessing risk practices
- Emergency management process
- Evacuation and lockdown protocols and best practices
- Fire extinguisher training
Typically, occupants attending training should expect an interactive and engaging session, using videos, case studies and real-life examples to make sure it can be applied to a real-life emergency as best as possible.
At the end of a training session, it is important that an emergency evacuation exercise is also performed to embed and validate the teams understanding. Trained occupants will be given the opportunity to take up the mantle of a fire warden in a less stressful environment than a real emergency.
Fire warden training is required to be completed at intervals no greater than 6 months apart, as outlined in the requirements of AS3745:2010 to maintain compliance.
What are the benefits of having fire wardens?
The greatest benefits your facility has with properly trained wardens include:
- Meeting the compliance requirements of Australian Standard 3745: Planning for Emergencies in Facilities. You can have peace of mind that your facility is covered against compliance checks.
- The security of knowing that your occupants are far less likely to be harmed during emergency events.
- The peace of mind knowing your fire wardens will be better equipped to protect your facility if a fire emergency occurs.
First 5 Minutes offers a comprehensive package that ensures your complete emergency compliance; including the warden training that we’ve talked about in this article. You can contact us below to get more information on how you can best prepare in the case of an emergency.