Educate your employees.
Educate your employees about fire safety and take other steps to protect your business from the threat of a fire.
Fire is one of the most common causes of property damage – and it can also be one of the most costly incidents for a small business. Approximately 10% of small businesses are affected by a fire, and the average cost for a fire claim is $35,000, according to a commercial insurance company.
Although modern safety regulations have reduced the risk, fire is still a major threat. To protect your business, it’s key to educate your employees on fire safety and emergency protocol, keep your workplace free from clutter, and properly maintain your equipment. These fire prevention tips can help keep your business safe:
1. Inspect and maintain fire extinguishers
Keep fire extinguishers inspected and maintained according to the local fire code and train employees on how to properly use them. Many people have never operated a fire extinguisher. Basic training can save lives during a fire emergency.
2. Install a fire sprinkler or fire suppression system
All businesses should have a fire alarm system, but you should also consider installing a sprinkler system or fire suppression system – some local jurisdictions also require these systems in commercial buildings. Both help to extinguish fires before the fire department arrives. If you’re operating a restaurant, for example, you should have a UL 300-compliant wet chemical fire suppression system, and follow the NFPA 96 standard for ventilation and fire protection.
3. Regularly clean and inspect equipment
Faulty equipment is a common cause of electrical fires. Make sure your machines and equipment are in proper working order, and switch them off when they’re not in use. Clean tools and equipment regularly to ensure they’re functioning properly and safe to use.
4. Reduce clutter
Keep your work-space as clutter-free as possible. Boxes, piles of paper, and other combustible materials can provide fuel for a fire. In addition, be sure to keep electrical appliances (e.g., microwaves, toasters, coffeemakers) away from paper or other fuel sources, and give computers and other equipment plenty of space so that air can circulate around them and they’ll stay cool.
5. Have an exit strategy
Create an emergency exit plan, and practice fire drills with your employees. Make sure emergency exit doors have proper signage and are well-lit. Employees should always have ready access to at least two exits. Regularly check stairwells to ensure that nothing is blocking them.
Should disaster strike, call SERVPRO of Plymouth/Wareham 508-746-9500