Fire safety inspections – for your peace of mind!
A fire safety inspection aims to discover any faults and shortcomings in the system. The system’s function is tested and checked to see whether it works as well as when it was installed. Chimney sweeping and fire safety inspections are conducted in accordance with Sweden’s Civil Protection Act, which came into force on 1 January 2004. This act stipulates that the municipality, for the purpose of fire prevention, is responsible for ensuring that chimney sweeping and fire safety inspections are conducted in accordance with the specified provisions in the buildings found in the municipality. The municipality can choose whether to conduct this task itself or to outsource the work.
The Swedish Civil Contingencies Agency (MSB) decides which systems are subject to chimney sweeping and fire safety inspections. In turn, MSB bases its decisions on the stipulations of the Civil Protection Act.
The following systems are subject to inspections:
- Wood-fired kitchen stoves and comparable hearths
- Fireplaces (ceramic stoves, heaters, open fireplaces and the like)
- Extractor ducts in restaurants and commercial kitchens
What is inspected in a fire safety inspection?
The fireplace system, boiler room and areas adjacent to the fireplace and its flues are inspected. Even building materials such as roof coverings and penetrated floor structures are inspected. Fans, filters and dampers installed in extractor ducts in restaurants and commercial kitchens are also encompassed by fire safety inspections.
In order to enable a fire safety inspection, you must have approved and properly maintained roof safety equipment, such as roof ladders and anti-slip protection.
A fire safety inspection is primarily visual, although instruments can be used for a more thorough inspection when necessary. Flue and duct air tightness can be checked using, for example, temperature measurements, smoke pressure tests or leak tests.
Consideration is given to how fire safety is affected by:
- soot build-up and deposits,
- damage or changes to the technical implementation,
- temperature conditions,
- pressure conditions and air tightness,
- operation and maintenance.
Gas burners and the associated gas pipes are not encompassed by a fire safety inspection.
How often are fire safety inspections conducted?
The time limit is every three or six years depending on the type of fuel and the type of installation. However, as a property owner you do not need to keep track of what is to be inspected and how often. This is determined from the information in the inspection logbook. In general, the property owner’s responsibility is to maintain the system for fire prevention purposes. Fire safety concerns not only life and health, but also property. You should be aware that any negligence can invalidate your insurance cover.