October is finally here, and although you’re no doubt counting down the days until Halloween, there’s another important event you need to mark off on your calendar. Yup, cancel all other plans and clear your diary, because the 9-15th sees the start of Fire Prevention Week (FPW).
Granted, thinking about fire safety may not be quite as exciting as planning the perfect playlist for your spooky extravaganza, but fail to do so and the resulting disaster will be even more terrifying than your least favourite horror film. No business owner wants to see their company go up in flames, especially when it’s a situation that can be easily avoided with proper care and attention. So you never have to face the nightmare of trying to keep your business afloat in the aftermath of a major accident, we’ve identified three top fire-safety tips to give you a head start for FPW.
#1: Prevention is key
Ideally you’d never find yourself in the unfortunate situation of dealing with a workplace fire, but prevention is the only way of making it a reality. Despite what soap operas tell us, the biggest cause of fires isn’t broken-hearted ex’s seeking revenge on rival lovers. Although arson is a potential cause, it’s far more likely that faulty electrics will end up being the culprit of a devastating blaze.
Undertaking Portable Appliance Testing (PAT) will give you peace of mind that appliances are in tip-top shape, and ready for use.
#2: Plan for the worst
Even the best preventative methods aren’t fool proof – accidents happen. Plan for the worst and, even in the event of a fire, no one will end up getting caught out. Implement an effective emergency exit plan and educate your employees on fire-safety and exit protocols – it could end up saving lives if disaster does strike. Keep pathways unobstructed and fire-doors properly illuminated at all times. Don’t forget about your alarm system either. Heat and smoke detectors are a legal requirement, and need to be regularly checked and updated every 10 years to keep them in line with regulations.
If you’re struggling, your local council will be able to provide you with a fire safety officer who’ll help identify potential issues and create an effective safety plan.
#3: Limit the damage
Getting employees to safety is the ultimate concern during a fire, but once everyone is free from immediate danger your thoughts will probably turn to your business. Companies such as Durasteel offer a wide range of fire barrier services to control the impact of fires. With options spanning from fire doors to blast protection walls, there are plenty of available methods to suit the nature of your business. Invest in measures to limit the damage, and even if the worst does happen you won’t have to suffer through the torture of watching your life’s work being destroyed.
Get started with these three tips now, and by the time FPW comes around you’ll be top of the fire-safety class!