10.4 Fire safety
In case of fire, dial 112. Below is important information for all missions from Greater Stockholm Fire Brigade regarding systematic fire protection activities. For more information, the Fire Brigade can be reached on +46 8 454 87 00.
Systematic fire protection activities
All owners and tenants of buildings and facilities must put adequate measures in place to prevent fire and limit damage if a fire occurs. These may include technical and organisational measures. To fulfil fire protection requirements, systematic fire protection activities must be conducted throughout the entire time the building or facility is used. These activities should be documented.
Due to increasing antagonistic threat scenarios to embassies, fire protection activities are of particular importance. The basics of reasonable fire protection are described below. It is recommended that the mission, with the aid of a fire consultant, carries out an evaluation of the measures required to achieve a reasonable level of fire protection, technically and organisationally, based on the mission’s specific conditions.
To counter fire risks, identify and document them and, where applicable, create fire protection rules that are made known to all staff. Risk reduction can be achieved both technically and organisationally. Since embassies face activity-specific risks in the form of antagonistic threats, attention should be paid to the possibility of installing fire-resistant systems to contain and extinguish fires in visiting areas. This is especially true for activities that operate in large former apartments, where there is often a lack of fire-resistant barriers.
In case of fire
In case of fire, fire extinguishers (preferably foam or dry powder) must be at hand. Fire blankets are also effective in the early stages of a fire. Fire extinguishing equipment should be in working order and fully serviced. Staff should be aware of where it is located and how to use it. Being able to take action in the early stages of a fire is critical to the outcome. It is important that staff are trained in the use of the specific fire extinguishing equipment of the mission.
Risk of fire spreading
A fire compartment is an enclosed space, such as an apartment, which must be able to keep a fire either shut in or shut out for a specified length of time. Its basic purpose is to safeguard the evacuation of people outside its limits. For this reason, doors at the limits of a fire compartment may not be held open or ajar with door wedges or equivalent. If doors need to remain open during working hours, a technical solution that guarantees their closure in case of fire should be installed. For example, doors can be held open by a magnet that is controlled by a smoke detector in the vicinity of the doors.
There should be two separate emergency exits in case of fire. These could be two separate stairwells, or the emergency services’ ladders could constitute an alternative emergency exit. It must always be possible to open a door to an emergency exit without the need for a key, code, etc. This is possible to achieve even when there are strict demands on perimeter security. It is also important that your premises comply with building codes for the type of activity being conducted.
The mission must have an emergency plan setting out how staff should act in case of fire. The plan must include details on how the premises are to be evacuated, who is responsible for what, who meets the emergency services and who gives them permission to enter the embassy premises. Staff should be aware of the emergency plan and receive an adequate level and frequency of theoretical and/or practical training to keep their knowledge up-to-date.
Accessibility and security for emergency services
It is important to provide relevant information when calling the emergency services so they can respond effectively. This will enable them to correctly dimension their response based on the size of the fire, local conditions, number of people at risk, and so on. If there is a threat scenario involved, it is vital that this is explained immediately so that the fire and police authorities can respond appropriately.
It is important that the embassy clearly gives the emergency services permission to enter the embassy premises as quickly as possible.
To ensure that fire doors, extinguishers, sprinklers and other fire-resistant systems function as intended, periodic self-checks must be carried out. Any rental agreement for the premises must contain a classification list which specifies what systems the mission is to check, and what systems the property owner is to check.
There is usually no requirement for fire detection systems in an office environment. However, it is very strongly recommended that some form of system be installed that initiates the mission fire and evacuation routines in accordance with the emergency plan at the early stages of the fire.
Ministry for Foreign Affairs
Visiting address Gustav Adolfs torg 1
Address 103 39 STOCKHOLM
email to Protocol Department