Interactive Map: England's Worst Fire Safety Records

After the 2017 Grenfell fire tragedy, fire safety shot into the public eye and many people began to think more about their own safety.

Because of this, we wanted to find out which area of England, and what type of premises, have the worst fire safety records.

Each year, the Home Office collects detailed information on incidents attended by Fire and Rescue Services. This covers a whole host of situations: false alarms, fires, fatalities, fire prevention work, information about the workforce and much more.

Included in this fire prevention work are fire safety audits carried out by every Fire and Rescue Authority (FRA) across the country.


Fire Safety Audits

How did we decide which area or premises had the worst fire safety record?

We assessed 49,423 fire safety audits from 45 Fire and Rescue Authorities across England. The higher the % of failed audits in that area the worse the fire safety record. The same works for the premises – the higher the %, the worse the record.

The Home Office defines a fire safety audit as:

“…a scheduled or planned visit by an appropriately skilled fire safety officer to carry out a comprehensive assessment of the level of compliance with the requirements of the Fire Safety Order”.

And they say an audit is unsatisfactory when:

“…further action is necessary to bring the premises up to compliance.”

In short, if you don’t comply with the government’s fire regulations, you don’t pass the audit. We used this info and worked out which area has the highest percentage of failed audits.


Fire and Rescue Authority

Below you can use our interactive map to see the different Fire and Rescue Authorities in England, and the % of audits that failed. The darker the area, the worse the fire safety record.

The average % of failed fire safety audits across the whole of England is 34.5%

See how your area compares:






As well as assessing the worst areas in England, we also looked at different types of premises and their fire safety records.


Premises in England with the worst fire safety records


Premises in England with the best fire safety records


Top reasons for failing audits

Finally, when they carry out an audit, each Fire and Rescue Authority notes why that premises didn’t pass. Below we have the top reasons for not passing a Fire Safety Audit:


Closing thoughts

As we can see above, some of the statistics are quite shocking. Numerous areas up and down the country are failing over half of their fire safety audits, and six out of the eight worst offending premises for fire safety are where we sleep at night. To top it off, the top reason for failing an audit is due to emergency routes and emergency fire exits – a worrying thought.