How prepared is your business to handle a fire?
Fire safety is an area neglected by many business owners. They assume it won’t happen to them, and why waste resources preparing for an unlikely outcome? Sure, the chances of a fire may be small, but like insurance, you’ll be glad you put the time and resources into a fire safety plan if the worst was to happen.
Fire Prevention Tips for Business
Each year, many businesses are forced to close due to damage from fires. These fires aren’t down to one cause that can be prevented. Some start in kitchens, some from faulty wiring, and some are even down to damage from wildfires. While it’s impossible to completely prevent potential fire damage, it is possible to prepare so the effects are limited. Here are some fire prevention tips to help protect your business from damage.
Create a Safety Officer Position
Whether you’re preparing for a fire, earthquake or any other crisis situation, creating a safety office position at your business is the first step. This person takes the lead in the event of a fire and is responsible for devising the most efficient escape routes. They also have responsibility for selecting the designated meeting point for all staff to gather at. Equip them with a high-visibility vest so they can be easily identified.
Ensure Escape Points are Clear
We’ve visited plenty of businesses down through the years that treat their stairwells and corridors as bonus storage for boxes, chairs and other items. This is a fire and safety hazard. If any obstructions are littering your halls or stairwells, work to clear them as a priority. Communicate to all staff members these places are off-limits and can’t be used for storage.
Audit Electrical Wiring
The cable situation in workplaces is often messy. Multiple extension cords can be found coming from outlets and clusters of wires converge and tangle below desks. Consider hiring an electrician to come into the workplace and audit your electrical situation. They’ll identify any potential issues and deliver advice on how to make your wiring safer. With a large percentage of business fires down to electrical wiring, this audit could be all-important.
Check Fire Equipment Regularly
While this probably seems like common sense, a lot of businesses don’t check their smoke alarms. Depending on the size and nature of the business, there may also be a sprinkler system in play. Work with the provider to ensure these are checked on a regular basis, along with any fire suppressants you have on-site. Fire extinguishers should be audited at least once per year as they lose effectiveness over time.
If your business resides within a larger building it’s worth bringing all the stakeholders together to form a joint fire plan. A chain is only as strong as its weakest link. Ensuring all your neighbours are up to speed on their fire prevention plan can help to prevent any nasty surprises. Consider putting a quick communication plan in place so everyone is aware of any incidents as quickly as possible.
Hire the Experts
Need help creating a fire safety plan for your business? With years of experience in the security field, Blackbird Security are your number one option. Contact us and we will be happy to help!