Questions Business Owners Should Ask About Their Own Company’s Fire Safety

Fires – particularly workplace fires – can be devastating, not just to the owners of the business, but to those who work for them. Now is as good a time as any to think about your company’s fire safety and what you can do to prevent fires.

Here are four questions that every business owner should ask themselves about their workplace fire safety:

Have you properly assessed your risks?

The amount of risk your business takes on almost entirely depends on what your business actually is. But you’d be surprised that in spite of the range in risk – even with the businesses that face the most danger – how little work is done in assessing what could cause a potential fire. What’s worse is that the solution is really easy. Some local governments even offer up the local fire marshal to come visit your workplace and put a whole plan in place.

Do you have plans in place in case of an emergency?

They teach you this as early as elementary school – but it certainly bears repeating. Have a plan – not just in case of fires – but any emergency. It’s not just something you do to protect yourself legally, but rather something you really owe your employees. They should know that they’re safe and that you’ve taken the proper steps to ensure their continued safety.

Do you have the right equipment?

The right equipment should be whatever your local government says it should be. Whether that’s a sprinkler system or a fire suppression system, you need to have the necessary systems in place to be compliant with regulations.

Do you have routine inspections?

Even if you have all the right equipment, you’ll need to also have routine inspections (we recommend once a year) in order to make sure everything works. There are a few things you can check on your own to save some money, but some you would be better off calling us pros in for. In places where there’s heavy machinery, flammable liquids, etc – you’ll want to have inspections twice a year. You just can’t risk it.

Don’t fret – it’s never too late to think about keeping your workplace safe! Maybe now’s the time to take action, even! Just give Protegis Fire & Safety a call and we can help you get going on all the answers to these questions. Make sure your place of business is up to code and safe for your employees!

Fire Prevention Basics

When is the best time to review fire basics? Now.

Some of the items we are going to cover may be basic, but it never hurts to refresh your memory when it comes to your life.

Rules for Fighting Fires:

  • Activate fire alarm or call 911
  • Get everyone out of the building
  • Only after 1 and 2 are done, do you attempt to extinguish the fire yourself

Fire Safety Tips:

  • Keep fire extinguishers close to any potential fire sources, in plain sight and in easy reach.
  • Have extinguishers serviced professionally at least once a year.
  • Maintain smoke detectors in all areas where fire could possibly occur.
  • Have a plan in case of fire. Have a practice drill every few months.

4 Things Required for a Fire

  • Fuel
  • Heat
  • Oxygen
  • Chemical Reaction

To stop a fire, simply remove any ONE of these things.

5 Classes of Fires

  • Class A: ordinary combustibles like wood, paper, cloth, trash and plastics
  • Class B: flammable liquids like gasoline or flammable gases like propane or butane
  • Class C: energized electrical equipment like motors, transformers and appliances, removing the electrical power turn this into one of the other classes of fire
  • Class D: combustible metals like potassium, sodium, aluminum and magnesium
  • Class K: cooking oils and greases like animal fats and vegetable fats

6 Main Types of Fire Extinguishers

  • Water and Foam – Removes heat and/or oxygen and for Class A fires only
  • Carbon Dioxide – Removes oxygen and heat and for Class B & C fires
  • Dry Chemical (with or without cartridges) – Stops the chemical reaction and for Class A & B & C fires
  • Wet Chemical – Removes heat and creates barrier between oxygen and fuel to prevent re-ignition and for Class K fires
  • Clean Agent – Stops the chemical reaction and for Class B & C fires
  • Dry Powder – Separates the fuel from the oxygen or removes the heat and for Class D fires only

These are just a handful of fire basics. If you have any questions on these or other fire protection topics, please contact Protegis Fire & Safety.