Top Tips On How To Reduce The Risks Of Industrial Fires
Industrial fires can be devastating to people, property, and businesses, causing serious injury or death, as well as significant financial loss. Fires can also have a negative environmental impact that could disrupt the local area.
As a business, it is your responsibility to ensure that all occupants are as safe as possible in your building, and there are many steps that you can take to reduce the risks and most dangerous elements of industrial fires.
Conduct regular fire safety audits
Regularly inspecting your facility and equipment for potential fire hazards is crucial in identifying and addressing potential fire risks. This should include checking for things like blocked exits, faulty electrical wiring, and flammable materials that may have been stored incorrectly.
Have a sufficient number of fire extinguishers and fire alarms
Fire extinguishers should be placed in strategic locations throughout the facility, and all employees should know how to use them, should they be required to.
In addition, all facilities should have a fire alarm system that is regularly tested and maintained. They are one of your most important tools in limiting the spread and reducing the risk of injury or death from a fire as they can:
- Detect signs early, giving employees and fire departments more time to respond and evacuate the building
- Automatically alert the fire department when a fire is detected, reducing the amount of damage caused by a potential fire
- Be integrated with other building systems, such as HVAC, sprinkler systems, lighting, and access control, to automatically shut off air handling systems, turn on emergency lighting, and lock down the building to prevent the spread of smoke and fire
Implement a comprehensive fire safety plan
Having a plan in place for how to respond to a fire emergency can help ensure that everyone in the facility knows what to do in the event of a fire. This should include evacuation procedures, designated assembly points, and the location of fire extinguishers and other fire-fighting equipment.
Train all staff on fire safety
Employees should be thoroughly trained on the fire hazards present around your site, as well as on the proper procedures for responding to a fire. This should include training on how to use fire-extinguishing equipment and how to safely evacuate the building in the event of an emergency.
Maintain your equipment and machinery
Proper maintenance of equipment and machinery is essential for reducing the risk of industrial fires. This includes regularly inspecting and servicing equipment, such as boilers, ovens, and other heat-producing equipment, to ensure that they are in good working condition at all times.
Store flammable materials properly
Flammable materials should be stored in a safe and secure location, away from heat sources and ignition sources. They should also be properly labelled and stored in approved containers. It can be easy to want to skip these steps in order to save time, however it is not worth the risk that comes with flammable materials.
Use fire-resistant materials
When building or renovating an industrial facility, the use of fire-resistant materials can help slow the spread of a fire, giving employees more time to evacuate the building. Some fire-resistant materials include concrete, bricks, render, gypsum, and specially designed fire-resistant glass.
By taking these steps to reduce the risks of industrial fires, your business can help to protect employees, facilities, and equipment. However, it is important to keep in mind that even with the best prevention measures in place, industrial fires can still occur. That’s why it’s essential to have the equipment and plans in place for how to respond as quickly and effectively as possible in the event of a fire emergency.