How to Prevent Fires in the Workplace
Workplace safety is normally a topic that doesn't receive nearly as much attention as it deserves, that is, until a fire or other incident occurs. In most cases though, workplace fires can be prevented or stopped before they cause too much damage – especially when the correct fire detection devices have been installed. Below are handy tips that can help prevent fires from occurring in working environments.
1. Good Housekeeping is Crucial
Clutter not only makes it more difficult to perform daily tasks in the workplace; it can hamper easy access to fire escapes or other emergency exits and even fuel an already-started fire. As a result, it is recommended to keep clutter to an absolute minimum – regardless of the type of work environment.
2. Maintain Machinery and Electrical Items
Keeping machinery and electrical items in good working order will go a long way in preventing workplace fires because it reduces the possibility of overheating, unprotected sparks or short circuits from occurring. Employees should not attempt to perform repairs on electrical items unless they are suitably qualified to do so. All potential electrical hazards or malfunctions should be reported immediately as well.
3. Store and Use Chemicals Responsibly
It is crucial to ensure that all employees who use chemical products have read and understood the instructions associated with using them safely. When storing any chemical-based substances, they should be placed in areas that are not only adequately ventilated, but that do not get too hot as well. No open flames should be permitted in the storage and usage areas either.
4. Maintain Easy Access to All Electrical Control Panels and Fire Alarm Equipment
It's essential to keep access to all electrical panels completely clear and free of debris, furniture, tools and other items. Failure to do so will result in it taking longer to shut these systems down in the event of an emergency. Keeping fire alarm equipment clear will ensure that it is able to function properly in the event of a fire breaking out.
5. Test the Fire Alarm System Regularly
Too many fires occur in the workplace each year as a result of malfunctioning fire alarm equipment. It is required by code that all fire detection devices and smoke alarms be tested on a monthly basis. This will enable you to schedule repair or maintenance work on faulty units before they pose a fire hazard.
6. Only Smoke in Demarcated Areas
Smoking should never be permitted in storage areas, in zones where chemicals are stored or in work areas where sparks will be present. Ensure that employees only smoke in designated areas – or not at all if the workplace in question is deemed too high of a fire risk to allow open flames.
Control Fire Systems provides an extensive range of high quality fire detection devices for small and large businesses. If you would like to find out more about preventing fires in the workplace or your company's fire alarm systems needs to be upgraded, contact us today.