Fire Warden Training Essentials for Facility Managers
Fire warden training is an essential component of emergency preparedness in facilities. It ensures fire wardens are appointed and trained to take charge during any emergencies including fire. In this article, we discuss the essentials to warden training that facility managers should know before getting started.
What is fire warden training and why is it important that facility managers have occupants undergo this training?
When it comes to emergencies, it is imperative that any kind of facility has appointed individuals to form the Emergency Control Organisation (ECO), who will take charge and ensure the safety of occupants.
Fire warden training is the collection of learning courses, materials and resources that once completed and understood prepare a regular occupant for accepting the responsibilities of a Warden.
Generally, fire warden training will include:
- Planning for all types of emergencies
- ECO structure
- Warden roles and responsibilities
- Alarm systems and assessing risk practices
- Emergency management process
- Evacuation and lockdown protocols and best practices
- Fire extinguisher training
To fulfill the demand for safer facilities during emergencies, the Australian Standard (AS) 3745:2010: Planning for Emergencies in Facilities, details the requirement for facilities to have appointed Wardens, each with their own respective duties, who increase the likelihood of safety for all occupants. This training is required to be completed at intervals no greater than 6 months apart.
Therefore, it is so important for facility managers to ensure nominated ECO members undergo this training. It is a vital component of ensuring a facility’s compliance as well as occupant safety during emergency events.
What types of fire warden training are available?
Depending on who conducts your fire warden training, the type of training on offer will differ greatly. At First 5 Minutes we offer two distinct types of fire warden training, aimed at satisfying very different facility needs.
The first type of fire warden training is included in a comprehensive contract service plan which covers the five essential training modules required by AS3745:2010. This service plan recurs over a three-year term and includes five events: Chief Warden training, Emergency Response Procedures (Warden training), Emergency Planning Committee (EPC) meeting, Emergency Skills Procedures, and an assisted Emergency Evacuation exercise. After this kind of all-encompassing training, Wardens are prepared to take command and coordinate all aspects of an emergency & more.
This training type is perfect for facility managers who are starting from scratch and want to ensure that they are achieving compliance without doubt.
The second type of fire warden training is a one-off module event that is completed outside of the complete service plan. It contains the exact same training for your Wardens, however, is a one-off session which doesn’t automatically repeat. This training type is for facilities who have a new Warden join their ECO or require refresher training.
What to expect during a typical fire warden training session?
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.
For in-person training events, our trainers generally will arrive at a facility to prepare their materials for training, making sure to get started as soon as possible. Occupants will be given the chance to discuss the material in-between presentations, ask questions, partake in group activities, and apply what they have learnt in practice scenarios.
Training is also available online, which provides the exact same learning outcomes as in-person training. This flexible & convenient training option is perfect for when occupants cannot make it to a facility for training or if social distancing is required at your facility.
At the end of a training session, it is important that an emergency evacuation exercise is also performed to embed and test 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.
Online training sessions will require an emergency evacuation exercise to be performed on a separate day when all wardens are present at the facility.
These fire warden training sessions are designed to be as engaging and enjoyable for attendees, with the goal everyone leaves feeling confident to act as a fire warden if an emergency presents itself in your facility.
How to make the most out of your fire warden training experience
Fire warden training at First Five Minutes is designed to be a practical learning experience. While it will of course contain all the information and materials you need to become a competent warden, the goal of fire warden training is you leave feeling confident in your ability to act as a warden.
Facilities should check in with their ECO members to make sure they are confident in all areas of their responsibilities. Depending on the feedback they get from ECO members, they can utilise training modules that allow fire wardens to either re-educate themselves on content or provide a refresher to gain their confidence back.
Precautions and considerations for fire warden training
Fire warden training is an important part of emergency preparedness in facilities, but it should never be confused with emergency evacuation exercises. While fire wardens are responsible for evacuating occupants, the act of performing an emergency evacuation exercise is imperative in not only training wardens but also reminding general occupants of fire emergency procedures to ensure their own safety.
It is mandatory that these exercises are completed at least once every 12 months, to ensure that your facility remains compliant in accordance with AS3745.