Spring is a time of rebirth in nature, and we also use it as a time for cleaning, organizing, and setting new agendas in our lives. If you’re responsible for your building’s fire safety plan, spring might be the ideal season to evaluate and hopefully improve your commercial fire safety plan.
The Ontario Fire Code requires certain commercial buildings to have a fire safety plan, and if yours is one of them, you need to revisit your plan as changes occur on your premises. However, if you find yourself too busy to handle the details, the expert staff at All Protect Systems, Inc has been designing, reviewing, and improving commercial fire safety plans for Ontario are businesses since 1996.
Life safety is the most critical aspect of any commercial fire safety plan, and your number one priority is getting occupants out of the building during a fire. When revisiting your fire safety plan, make notes of any changes to the building structure or uses within it.
Perhaps new furniture has been placed in a lobby, or an office has become storage space? Ask yourself how these alterations could affect your fire risks or evacuation routes. Physical changes to the building or uses of building spaces may require an alteration to your building evacuation route or even a new fire exit.
As a building manager, your responsibilities include posting signs and keeping an eye out for faulty equipment that could ignite and start a dangerous fire. Your commercial fire safety plan must identify these hazards and educate the appropriate staff about ways to minimize danger.
The reasons for most commercial fires are surprisingly predictable. According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), most accidental commercial building fires start from four basic causes.
Cooking equipment is responsible for:
- 65 percent of healthcare facility fires
- 61 percent in restaurants
- 38 percent in educational institutions
Avoid fires from cooking equipment by:
- Cleaning up any grease buildup Up Grease. …
- Properly maintain the equipment
- Keep fire extinguishers nearby
Heating equipment, such as furnaces, boilers, and radiators, cause:
- 14 percent of fires in industrial buildings
- 11 percent in office buildings
- Nine percent in restaurants
Avoid fires from heating equipment by:
- Regular inspections
- Preventative maintenance
Electrical equipment accounts for:
- 12 percent of office building fires
- 10 percent in stores
- Nine percent of restaurant fires
Avoid electrical fires by keeping an eye out for:
- Corroded wiring
- Overloaded circuits (blown fuses or tripping breakers)
- Daisy chained power strips or extension cords
Despite the reduction in smokers, smoking still accounts for:
- Nine percent of office building fires
- Seven percent in restaurants
- Five percent in healthcare facilities
Avoid fires from smokers by:
- Keeping smokers outside
- Provide ashtray with sand for them to extinguish their cigarettes
- Strictly prohibit any smoking around oxygen tanks
Encourage Feedback After Fire Drills
Fire drills can become a robotic experience, but it does force the participants to think about fire safety. Encourage the building occupants to share any ideas or concerns that they may have about fire hazards or the evacuation plan.
Even if they don’t have any ideas on hand, your request can encourage them to give the matter some thought. Everyone who works in a building should have an eye out for potential fire hazards.
While spring is an excellent time to revisit your building’s fire safety plan, fire safety should be a year-round priority. However, if you prefer to delegate fire safety planning to professionals, All Protect Systems can help you with all of your fire safety needs. Call them today to find out what they can do for you!