Everyone assumes that a workplace fire is something they’ll see on the news happening somewhere else, but because of the serious nature of workplace fires, there’s never a good enough reason to become complacent. Fires spread quickly, destroy premises, and can change people’s lives in an instant.
For this reason, it’s vital that you know the top fire safety tips for the workplace. Take a look at the following expert advice, and then pass it on to the rest of your staff so that everyone is up to speed. It’s this kind of proactive approach that will save lives.
Test Your Fire Detection System on a Regular Basis
It’s great that you’ve invested in a state-of-the-art fire detection system, but are you really getting the best out of it? Regular testing and maintenance are the only way to ensure that your system is fit for the job that it was originally intended for.
Faulty detection systems can have serious consequences, and put every employee under your care at risk. Adopt a proactive approach by scheduling in periodic testing that is at least as frequent as the manufacturer’s recommendations. That way you’ll be able to sleep with the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re on top of one of your key fire safety responsibilities.
Install a Quality Fire Duct Where You Need It
Fires can spread quickly through ducts, and can create blazes that are virtually impossible for fire crews to tackle. The most important thing that you can do regarding your ducting is to ensure you install premium quality fire ducts, like the ones offered by Thor Duct, as standard throughout your premises.
That way you’ll be doing your utmost to contain any potential blazes, and giving your employees valuable seconds to get out should the worst happen. Most people think it will never happen to them, but it’s exactly that kind of complacency that dramatically increases the chances of a workplace fire occurring.
Appoint a Fire Marshall
Every business should have at least one fire marshal, and someone to fill in when they’re off sick or on vacation. The fire marshal’s job is to take control of the situation, and ensure that every member of staff knows what to do in the event of an emergency. Whilst many people think that this means being a hero on the day, this outlook couldn’t be further from the truth.
The fire marshal’s primary responsibility is to ensure that all members of staff are familiar and conversant with the company’s fire evacuation procedures. A key way that this should be done is through regular fire safety drills in which everyone is evacuated from the building exactly how they would be in the event of a real fire.
Once everyone has arrived at the designated assembly point, a register should be taken, and then a full debriefing session given. Anyone who failed to follow the company procedures would then be identified as someone in need of additional fire safety training.
Train Your Staff on Different Types of Fire Extinguishers
Booking your staff onto a fire safety course is one of the best investments that you can make. Many businesses will feel that losing the majority of their staff for the day is too costly, but it’s nothing compared to the cost of not being fully prepared in the event of a fire.
Everyone is used to seeing fire extinguishers in the workplace, but how many of your staff actually know how to safely operate them? Without adequate training and knowledge, a fire extinguisher user can actually increase the hazard level, rather than extinguish the flames. Take the time to get everyone up to speed, and you’ll be able to sleep a lot easier at night knowing everyone understands the basics.
Install Highly Visible Emergency Lighting
The final thing that you need to consider is emergency lighting. If you work in a well-lit factory or office, you probably take for granted how easy it is to get out of the door in a hurry.
This is not necessarily going to be the case in the event of a fire. In fact, in most large-scale fires, your vision will be significantly impaired due to the thick clouds of smoke which will be produced.
Emergency lighting is the best solution to this issue, and it’s something that could save a life if you experience a workplace fire. To ensure that everyone is familiar with the escape routes and how to interpret the lighting, it’s vital they’re pointed out in every fire-drill debriefing session.
Ensure escape routes are free from clutter and other unwanted items, and assume that in the event of the fire people will only be able to see the lighting. That way you will have a system in place that will save lives should the worst happen.