As a business owner, it's natural to be concerned about the potential risks and losses your business may face. However, with careful planning and preparation, you can effectively mitigate these risks and ensure the smooth running of your operations. One avoidable risk that deserves particular attention is fires. By taking proactive measures and implementing necessary safety protocols, you can significantly reduce the chances of fire incidents in your workplace and protect your valuable assets.
According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), during the five-year period of 2007-2011, fire departments responded to an average of 3,340 fires in office properties per year, leading to a staggering $112 million in damage, several injuries and even death.
By understanding the common causes of fires in workplace settings, you can take proactive steps to prevent such tragic incidents. Our tips will equip you with the knowledge and strategies necessary to safeguard your company from these avoidable disasters.
THE TOP CAUSES OF FIRE DAMAGE IN BUSINESSES
According to the NFPA, commercial fires and their resulting property damage are mostly caused by these incidents, from most common to least common:
HOW TO PREVENT COMMERCIAL FIRES
TEACH YOUR EMPLOYEES ABOUT FIRE SAFETY
Protecting against a commercial fire begins with training your employees on how to prevent them. Since most workplace fires start in the office kitchen, it is important to educate employees on office kitchen fire safety tips. Many fires can be prevented if employees are mindful of their food, unplug appliances after use, and adhere to other rules within your business setting.
It is also important to train staff on how to properly use fire extinguishers in the office, especially when dealing with small flames that can be extinguished without calling emergency services. In the event of an uncontrollable active blaze, it is crucial for your employees to be aware of the emergency protocols in place and the available evacuation routes to ensure their safety.
INSPECT YOUR OFFICE EQUIPMENT
As the business owner, it is important for you to regularly check your office equipment. Ensure that kitchen appliances are clean, functioning properly, and that electrical cords are not frayed. Then, perform proper maintenance and inspections on office supplies, heating, electrical, and lighting systems to ensure that everything is running safely.
WHAT TO DO IF A WORKPLACE FIRE DOES OCCUR
Having an emergency plan in place is imperative in the event of a commercial fire. If an employee sees a fire that can be quickly contained, he or she should attempt to use the fire extinguisher right away. If the fire is too large to extinguish, the staff member should immediately activate the emergency alarm system. Once the alarm rings, everyone must exit through the appropriate, pre-determined evacuation routes. When employees make it safely outside, they should call 9-1-1.
After your workforce is outdoors and standing in the designated waiting spots, conduct an official head count. If anyone is missing, please refrain from rushing back inside the burning building to find them. Instead, it is crucial to immediately alert the emergency services about the missing person. Allow the fire department to conduct a thorough search and rescue operation.
WHAT TO DO AFTER THE FIRE IS OUT
In the unfortunate event that a fire does break out in your business, call on the professionals at ServiceMaster Recovery Management. Our commercial fire and smoke damage removal specialists guide you through every step of the process to ensure you can get your doors back open as quickly as possible. We will go the extra mile to save as many critical business assets as possible, including important documents, computers, data storage devices, product stock, and more. Our commitment is to be by your side every step of the way, working together to ensure you can quickly resume business as usual. Call us today at 844-413-3130.