Understanding fire safety practices is crucial to protecting your workplace and home.
Every year, thousands of businesses and residential properties are destroyed by fires that could have been easily prevented. You don’t have to become a statistic.
Whether you’re about to build or already have your premises, these fire safety practices are worth knowing about.
In fact, by following these five basic fire safety practices you dramatically reduce fire threats. That’s why educating yourself and being proactive in fire safety is so important.
So what are these fire safety practices you need to be aware of?
Let’s get started.
Fire Safety Practice #1 Measures Adopted During the Building’s Design Phase
Contrary to popular belief, fire safety does not begin with the installation of fire prevention systems.
Fire safety is an inbuilt function that’s conceptualized during the design phase of the building. And thanks to the National Building Code, OSHA standards, and provincial Fire Codes, you can be assured of the fire integrity of contemporary buildings.
This primordial fire safety practice takes into consideration the building’s design aspects. The types of materials used in construction in conjunction with the construction style. Each element is carefully considered as architects ask questions such as:
· How well can this material prevent the spread of fire?
· Does this building design encourage the fire to spread?
· Can smoke be trapped in the building if we use these materials?
The second fire practice is closely linked to this first one and has to do with the measures adopted during the construction phase.
Fire Safety Practice #2 Measures integrated during the construction of the building phase
Modern buildings are constructed to meet an acceptable standard of fire safety while reducing associated risks from smoke and heat.
The goal of the fire prevention measures integrated during the construction phase is to mitigate the risk of injury or death of workers, building occupants and firefighters in the event of a fire.
As such, designers and building contractors, have a responsibility to ensure that:
· All building designs incorporate a sufficient number of fire escape routes
· All buildings are furnished with appropriate fire doors and fire barriers
· Premises are designed with fire separation compartmentalization in mind
· Evacuees have protected areas to flee to in the event of a fire
And what happens when the building is now ready for use?
Fire Safety Practice #3 Measures put in place to prevent ignition of substances
When a building is ready for use, there are still protocols that must be adhered to in order to prevent fire risk. We’re referring here to the storage of combustible materials and the safeguarding of potential ignition sources.
Where combustible materials are concerned, care must be followed in terms of:
· Ensuring the quantities of flammable materials kept on-site do not exceed the maximum allowed capacities as regulated by law
· Making sure combustible materials are stored correctly especially volatile substances such as oxygen cylinders, gases, and flammable liquids
· Clearing rubbish, removing it periodically and not allowing it to accumulate on-site
For ignition sources, attention must be paid to:
· Reduce, eliminate and control all possible ignition sources which are on the premises.
· Plant equipment inclusive of electrical machinery and or engines which should be monitored and not allowed to overheat
· Employees who smoke making provision for them and creating smoking-specific areas for them
Fire Safety Practice #4 Measures put in place to limit the development and effects of fire
Fire safety practices also include the measures designed to limit the development of fire, slow the spread of fire and draw attention to a fire when it breaks out. We can talk about fire doors, fire alarm systems as well as sprinklers.
Fire doors are particularly important as they play several roles. Firstly, they help to contain a fire stopping it from spreading to other areas of the building. Furthermore, they can also be used to protect escape routes along stairs and corridors.
Fire and smoke alarms serve to provide an early warning to building occupants of a fire on site. The fact that fire alarms save lives is undisputed. There are studies and research to prove it. So make sure your fire alarms are correctly installed and fully functional.
Lastly, sprinkler systems. These fire safety systems are meant to extinguish fires in their early stages as well as control any incidental occurrences. They also help to significantly reduce the potential losses suffered in the event of a fire.
Fire Safety Practice #5 Measures taught to occupants of the building
The aforementioned fire safety practices are great but there’s one final element that must be discussed – fire safety plans.
It doesn’t matter how many fire exits you have or how carefully the escape routes have been designed if the building occupants haven’t been taught the fire safety plan.
You see, the fire safety plan is the document that contains all these fire safety practices as well as information on how to evacuate the building.
It’s not a document that is simply created and tossed somewhere in the back. It’s one that must be known by each employee so they know how to escape, protect themselves, and alert fire authorities if a fire occurs.
Every business should have a fire safety plan and we can help you draft one if you don’t currently have a comprehensive plan or need to evaluate your existing fire safety plan.
Fire Safety Practices Conclusion
Knowing these fire safety practices allows you to make the necessary adjustments needed to improve your surroundings.
These fire safety practices may not be the easiest to implement – but when taken seriously and acted upon – they can take your home and or business fire safety up by several notches.
Using these practices can boost your fire prevention efforts.
For homeowners and businesses in Waterloo, Ontario keen to discuss fire safety best practices with a specialist don’t hesitate to reach out to Profire Safety Services.
We offer a comprehensive line of emergency backup generators, fire alarm systems, fire warning systems, fire extinguishers, emergency lighting, exit lighting, fire safety plans, sprinkler systems, and gas detection services.
Request a free quote today.