Workplaces remain vulnerable to a number of threats that affect their workers and the continuation of the business. These risks include weather conditions, power outages, workplace violence or natural disasters. Organizations have to remain prepared to face all kinds of unexpected incidents. However, when it comes to workplace incidents, nothing is more frightening than fire. The incident is an unpredictable and life-threatening event that causes months of disruptions in operations. Protection against workplace fire begins with preventive measures embedded in the company safety program. While some incidents are uncontrollable like wildfires, companies can avoid workplace fires by taking some extra precautions.
Fire Hazards in the Workplace
The first step of fire safety precaution as put forward by fire protection consulting is to assess the presence of fire hazards. Usually, three types of fire hazards are common in the workplace: electrical, combustible and flammable. Disturbed electrical circuitry or damaged equipment like extension cords, blocked panels or overloaded circuits are the leading cause of electrical fires. Regular maintenance of circuitry and equipment is a way to prevent electrical fires from happening.
Another cause of fire in the workplace is due to the improper storage of flammable material. Many facilities have to handle volatile solvents or collection of combustible dust from various processes. Both flammable and combustible material burn but at different flash rate. Flammable material has low flashpoint in which low temperature ignites surface vapors. On the other hand, combustible material has a high flash point and burn instantly. Both these materials need proper storage, or else they can cause fires immediately.
If there is flammable or combustible dust present in the air, and igniting source can quickly start a fire. The initial explosion causes a chain reaction of secondary explosions, causing fatal injuries and property damage. Every organizational life safety consulting personnel always emphasis on handling the matter with utmost caution. Assessment of fire hazards present in a workplace and ignition sources dramatically reduces chances of fires.
Some Tips to Prevent Workplace Fires
- Turn off all electrical circuits at the end of the day. Electrical circuits easily overheat and start burning to create a fire hazard. Include turning off electrical appliances at the end of the day as necessary in company safety policy. This simple activity will save lives and money considerably
- Train employees for fire safety and handling in case of an event. Training will equip workers on-site with immediate response to control fire. They can take care of common and light fires with extinguishers and other equipment. In case of a heavy fire, they can contain it until professional firefighters arrive. Fire safety training will guide them in identifying the type of fire and respond accordingly
- Fire protection consulting suggest to periodically conducting fire drills to keep the employees responsive in case of an emergency. Have the nearest fire exit accessible at all times and have them follow a practice regularly to create awareness
- Always have fire extinguishers and other fireproof equipment ready near fore prone areas like furnaces for an immediate response
- Keep a high degree of maintenance to reduce the chances of any potential danger
- Mark working area as a smoke-free zone and designate a place for smokers away from the site
- Never block sprinklers or smoke detectors
- Educate and train employees to report any fault they identify, electrical or otherwise
Fire hazard is something that can happen unpredictable and difficult to recover once damaged. You need proper equipment and fire safety consulting from experts like Roycans. You can find all safety equipment, buy hand sanitizers online or consult them for workplace safety training and consultation.