If you think it’s not possible for a fire to ignite at your business site, think that in an average year, almost 3,500 fires break in office buildings across the US. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) reports that these fires kill four civilians, harm 44 others, and caused $112 million in asset damage each year. Fire at all times is a possibility, but you can lessen the chance of death, injury, and asset damage by making a fire protection plan for your business.
What to Include in Your Fire Protection Plan
It’s significant for your workers to be aware of your facility’s fire risks and take steps to lessen the probability of fire. After that, they must know how to react in case a rogue blaze breaks out. To make sure the highest level of security, incorporate the following in your fire protection efforts:
Put into practice a Fire Emergency Evacuation Plan
Emergency reply is easier when everyone knows their individual responsibilities. Set up a comprehensive fire protection emergency evacuation plan that dictates how to react, when to respond, and identifies a path way out. If workers have particular needs or involve special attention, tackle these details in the plan.
Set up a Fire Prevention Plan
A fire prevention plan provides facilities with documentation outlining the workers responsible for identifying flammable materials, fire hazards and heat-producing tools. It also outlines the events needed to prevent potential emergencies. The fire avoidance plan should be communicated with all workers and available in writing for reassess at any time.
Train Team Members
On a yearly basis, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and NFPA need fire extinguisher instruction for workers. Every member of staff has to receive necessary training and be briefed on new or simplified regulations.
Maintain Emergency and Exit Lights
To make sure paths of way out and exits stay lit at all times, put into practice a schedule maintenance plan to check lights and replace broken or burnt out bulbs. As well as, frequently test emergency backup power and exit lights to confirm they are operational.
Practice Proper Housekeeping Techniques
Every day housekeeping tasks play a significant role in keeping amenities clear of fire hazards. Make sure trash and stuffing materials are in metal containers with tight-fitting lids. Clean up flammable materials right away, as well as chemical spills and oil to lessen the risk of fire. Similarly, extra storage and tools should be in correct storage areas clear of aisles or fire exits and not intrusive for automatic sprinkler systems.
Create a Fire Emergency Response Team
Develop a team of folks who are trained and knowledgeable in fire emergency plan measures and are willing to put into effect fire safety and avoidance methods throughout the building. The team members will help others during a fire emergency and help direct people to safety.
Enlisting a licensed and authorized fire protection company provides service managers with excellent inspections, safety tests and maintenance to fire protection apparatus. Establish frequencies as outlined in NFPA code by the equipment manufacturer and the local Authority Having Jurisdiction (AHJ).
Implementing OSHA Fire Protection Procedures
Fire avoidance plans don’t stop there. Once all the fire hazards are recognized, OSHA fire protection measures need to be developed for the proper treatment and storage of hazardous materials, assuring that the proper safety measures are in place when using them near fire hazards. It’s also vital to make sure they aren’t stored near fire hazards, either. As well, controls need to be developed for possible ignition sources, to make sure that they don’t start uncontrolled fires.
Plans also need to comprise suppression methods for each fire hazard. Not all fires are similar, and so we can’t extinguish every fire with water and call it good enough. What would occur if we turned a hose onto a fire in an electrical panel? Let’s concur that we don’t want one of our workers to find out personally.
Accounting For Less Obvious Fire Hazards
What about other inflammable or combustible materials? They have to to be accounted for in the plan as well. Not only do we need to believe the products and tools that we use in our operations, we also need to think about the byproducts and equipment that we don’t use directly. For example, many dust, including wood, plastic, and even some metals, are highly flammable in sheltered environments. So if your operations make lots of dust, make sure that your plan provides the measures to make sure that they don’t combust. Paper, cardboard, and wooden pallets also are flammable materials that can build up and create a significant fire risk. These need to be included in the fire prevention plan, also
Employee Training & Awareness
Our plans also need to make sure that the necessary OSHA fire protection and prevention information is communicated to our workers, as well. Finally what good does it do us if only one individual in the office knows and understands the plan, whilst dozens or hundreds of workers are working near these fire hazards? Post signs that warn workers of the fire hazards, and where the fire extinguishers and other containment methods are situated.
All of this requires to be acknowledged in a written fire prevention plan, and must be accessible for workers to review. They should also be trained on the fire protection and prevention plan, so that they are aware of the procedures, and even clue them in to why the measures are in place. The more they know how the measures are keeping them safe, the more likely they are to agree and follow the method.