Office Fire Safety 101: Workplace Fire Prevention Tips
Office Fire Safety 101: Workplace Fire Prevention Tips
Fires are a common occurrence in any workplace. It's up to you, as the employer, to take the necessary precautions to help prevent them from happening. As an employer, it is your responsibility to maintain a safe work environment for employees and visitors. This includes ensuring that all fire safety regulations are followed and that employees understand their role in preventing fires from breaking out on-site.
Ensure Fire Doors are Closed
- Fire doors should be closed at all times. If a fire door is open, it could cause a backdraft to occur inside your building and cause smoke to enter.
- Backdrafts can also start fires inside of buildings that are normally well-ventilated and safe from outside threats.
Keep Fire Exits Clear
This is one of the most important things you can do to prevent workplace fires. Keep fire exits clear at all times, and don't let them become storage areas. If an emergency occurs, you want to be able to get out of the building as quickly as possible without having to worry about tripping over something or getting caught in a crowd.
If a disaster strikes your business premises, such as an earthquake or other natural disaster, make sure that everyone knows where they're supposed to go if there's an evacuation. Make sure that any necessary items are either kept near exits or stored elsewhere in case there isn't time for people to access them after evacuating the building due to a fire or other emergency situation (such as heavy flooding).
Assign Specific Responsibilities Throughout the Workplace
Assigning specific responsibilities throughout your workplace can help ensure that everyone knows what to do in the event of a fire.
- Designate someone to be responsible for calling 911 and alerting others if there's an emergency. This person should not be involved with putting out the fire or evacuating people, but should instead focus on making sure that all employees are safely evacuated from the building.
- Assign someone who is able to put out fires in their area, as well as a backup person who can take over if needed. This person may also be called upon to evacuate people with disabilities or other special needs, such as those that require assistance moving through crowds of panicked coworkers who are rushing toward exits at full speed (which is never a good idea).
Regularly Maintain Your Fire Extinguishers
To ensure that your fire extinguishers are in proper working order, it is important to make sure that you regularly check the pressure gauge and tamper seal. The correct pressure range for a fire extinguisher can vary depending on the type of extinguisher, but if you have a CO2 or ABC dry chemical extinguisher, it should be within 40-60 PSI. Additionally, you should make sure that the tamper seal is not broken before use. If an extinguisher has been discharged or if the tamper seal has been broken, then it must be replaced immediately because of potential damage from exposure to high temperatures caused by use or misuse.
To ensure optimal coverage during a fire emergency at work, each company should have at least one multipurpose dry chemical unit per floor of their building space; this means that there should be one multipurpose dry chemical unit per person who works on each floor of your business (including employees who work remotely).
Have a Smoke/Fire Alarm System Installed and Inspect it Regularly
The most important steps you can take to help protect your employees are to have a smoke/fire alarm system installed and inspect regularly.
- If this does not sound like something you've been doing, there's no time like the present to get started.
- Don’t forget that these alarms need to be tested frequently—at least once per month—to ensure they are working properly and will alert your company if they detect dangerous levels of smoke or fire.
Test Your Emergency Lighting System
You should test your emergency lighting system every month, at a minimum. This will ensure that all of the lights are functional and that they are properly positioned to provide adequate light during an emergency situation. It’s also important to test the lighting after work is done on the building, especially if it involves new wiring or plumbing work. You don’t want to learn that a fire has broken out while you're sitting in darkness because the wiring was accidentally cut.
In addition, make sure you perform periodic tests of your fire alarms and sprinkler systems as well - even if there's no indication that anything is wrong with them!
Fire is an ever-present danger in any workplace. Whether you are a business owner, a supervisor, or an employee, it's important to know how to prevent fires in your place of business. Not only do fires pose a threat to the safety and well-being of employees and customers alike, they also cost money and time that could be spent elsewhere. You can help prevent fires by following these tips:
- Keep your workplace clean and free from combustible materials.
- Educate yourself on fire prevention techniques.
- Make sure all employees follow proper fire safety procedures.
There is no substitute for a well-trained and prepared workforce. A fire emergency can happen at any time, and every employee should be ready to respond quickly and effectively. Employees who are trained to use the fire extinguishers in their area will be able to quickly put out the fire before it spreads through the building. If everyone knows what their responsibilities are in case of an emergency, then everyone is better able to handle the situation when it happens!