RMLV: Fire Safety On Licensed Premises

Responsible Management of Licensed VenuesAs with other business operators, liquor licensees and managers must have knowledge of a range of laws which affect their business.

While at times, the sheer volume of rules and regulations may be daunting to keep up with, compliance will assist operators to reduce their risk and potentially improve their bottom line. For example, consider fire safety laws and the huge exposure of a licensee who does not have fire and evacuation plans.

A quick overview is provided on some of the more significant areas for liquor licensees.

Fire safety

The safety of building occupants is the responsibility of the owner/occupier who must ensure that there is an effective procedure adopted – to allow occupants and staff to leave the building promptly and safely in an emergency. This includes ensuring that:

  • Fire exits are unlocked and not blocked

  • Renovations or alterations to the building have appropriate fire safety installations and certification

  • Fire and evacuation plans are in place and staff trained accordingly

  • Fire safety installations are regularly tested and maintenance record kept

  • Fire instruction records and details of workers who attended training are kept

  • Public areas of the building are not overcrowded hindering escape

  • Fire safety advisors are appointed, especially for high occupancy buildings

On-the-spot penalties may be issued or prosecution action taken by the Queensland Fire and Rescue Service (QFRS). In the case of overcrowding, the QFRS has the power to empty patrons from an overcrowded venue.

OLGR investigators also have powers to –

  • Issue an order for any urgent fire issue to be rectified

  • Close the premises if there is a health or safety threat

Further information and fact sheets for licensees and approved managers are available from: www.fire.qld.gov.au/buildingsafety.