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by the NFCC

Control measure

Identify the type, use and contents of temporary structures and temporary accommodation units

Control measure knowledge

Temporary structures

Risk information and site plans may provide information regarding temporary structures but, due to the nature of these structures, this is less likely and significant changes may have been made since the plans were last reviewed. The use of the temporary structure may also be in breach of the original plans; there is also a risk of it being inappropriately used, for example  as unauthorised accommodation.

Information may be available from other sources including:

  • Site office
  • Responsible person
  • Residents
  • Signage
  • Licensing information available on-site; this is sometimes posted on site boundaries
  • Scene survey

Information that should be gathered about a temporary structure includes:

  • Structure and construction
  • Occupation
  • Power supplies and isolation points
  • Storage and housekeeping
  • Any hazardous materials present
  • Any incomplete or unsecured parts of the structure
  • Any inappropriate use, such as unauthorised accommodation

Further information about temporary structures can be found in the Building Research Establishment supplementary information.

Temporary accommodation units

Temporary accommodation units (TAUs) may be identified by signage such as 'Site office' or 'Canteen'. However, their general appearance may not be easily identifiable; for example, a converted ISO shipping container or a part of a building could be fitted out with temporary partitions. Areas of the building not normally used for accommodation may be temporarily converted during construction or renovation.

Any sources of power, such as LPG canisters or storage tanks, and isolation points should be identified. Power may be supplied by a separate intake or be supplied by a generator.

Strategic actions

Fire and rescue services should:
  • Gather information about the location, type, use and contents of temporary structures or temporary accommodation units, where feasible

  • Visit temporary structures or temporary accommodation units, and develop tactical plans where necessary

  • Provide risk information and emergency plans for temporary structures or temporary accommodation units if necessary

Tactical actions

Incident commanders should:
  • Look for signage on temporary structures or temporary accommodation units 

  • Liaise with the responsible person on site to identify the type, use and contents of the temporary structure or temporary accommodation unit

  • Consider the possibility of inappropriate use, for example, as accommodation or for storing hazardous materials

  • Consider isolating utilities for temporary structures or temporary accommodation units