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Category: Fire Safety

The Three Essential Components of a Workplace Fire Safety Training Program

Fires are a very real threat to almost any workplace. While it’s true that industrial and manufacturing settings are at a higher risk than a more traditional office setting – anyone can be the victim of a fire. 

Therefore, it is vital that you have an evacuation and safety plan in place. Even more importantly, your employees need to be trained so that they know how to react in the event that the worst happens. But what should that training entail and what are the important details that they need to know? That’s the question we’re going to answer today.

Here are some of the things that should be included when it comes to training your employees on fire safety. Let’s jump right in.

Recognizing Fire Hazards

Perhaps the most important aspect of any workplace fire safety training program is teaching employees how to recognize potential fire hazards. All fires need three things in order to happen:

  1. Heat (a source of ignition)
  2. Fuel (anything flammable)
  3. Oxygen (what keeps the fire going)

When all three of these things exist, fire’s can start and maintain themselves. Preventing fires starts by keeping these things away from each other and also recognizing when they aren’t. This helps to prevent fires from happening, period.

Any workplace fire safety training should first teach employees what fire-starting components are and how they can identify them. The better they know how to look out for these things the better off they’ll be at preventing fires. 

What To Do If There Is A Fire

You may have a fire safety plan but do your employees know exactly what they’re supposed to do? When that alarm goes off, do they know what to do and where to go? In any sound fire safety training program, employees should know:

1.) Their role in executing the plan

2.) How to leave/exit the building

3.) What to do as they evacuate;

4.) Where to regroup 

5.) What to do if they physically encounter heat, smoke, or fire

By covering these basics, you will ensure that your employees will be as prepared as possible in the event the worst occurs. 

How Equipment Works

The third foundational component of workplace fire safety training needs to be about equipment and how it works. How pull stations work and are activated; how to find and operate fire extinguishers; who to call and notify if something goes wrong; and also how sprinklers and other suppression systems work.

These programs should all be taught by professionals. They’ll be able to cover a variety of materials including differences among fire extinguishers, what chemicals are used for what, what – exactly – they should do, and the like.

If you have questions about how to implement fire safety training in your workplace, feel free to give us a call and we’re happy to walk you through the process. Until then, good luck!

Holiday Fire Safety

With COVID on the move this holiday season, things will certainly be different as we close out the year. With family gatherings either limited or not in the cards at all, people will inevitably be looking for other ways to spread some holiday cheer. That could include louder light displays, more grandiose Christmas trees, etc.

However you decide to celebrate, it’s important to make sure you’re being safe. Unfortunately, when it comes to the holidays – there are lots of potential fire safety issues – and every year, we like to remind you all of some of the things you should be thinking of. It’s bad enough that we can’t get together with family, it’d be even worse if an accident happened due to a fire.

That being said, here are some holiday fire safety tips for you to keep in mind this season so that everyone can stay as safe as possible. Let’s jump right in!

Christmas Trees

The good news is that Christmas tree fires aren’t widespread, but when they do occur, they take an awful lot along with them. About 200 Christmas tree fires happen nationally each year – but of those 200, there were 6 deaths, 16 injuries, and $14.8 million in property damage. So while it’s a long shot, you still need to be mindful. Here are a few things to keep in mind when you’re on the lookout for the perfect tree:

  • If you choose a live tree – make sure it’s healthy and fresh. If the tree seems even a little dried out, pass on it. The dryer a tree is – the more likely it can catch fire. 
  • Before you put it in your stand, cut two inches off the bottom. This will help it absorb and maintain its health longer, thus minimizing the risk of a fire. Also – be conscious of where you’re positioning the tree as well. Try to keep it away from places like a fireplace, radiator, candles, lamps, and other potential heat sources. Make sure your stand always has water in it.
  • Check your lights. Make sure there aren’t loose bulbs, frayed wires, and above all else – make sure the bulbs are UL-listed for tree and indoor use. And always, always turn off the lights before you go to bed. 
  • Throw away the tree when you’re done. Having a dry tree with dry wood is rarely a good thing to have on your property. Most towns have a disposal service, so take advantage of it.

Holiday Decorations

This is a big one. There are nearly 1,000 fires every year due to holiday decorations. Like Christmas trees – there aren’t a ton of these fires – but the fires that do occur are devastating. Whenever it comes to your decorations and yard displays, keep the following in mind:

  • Always choose decorations that are flame retardant or resistant. And when you place them indoors, keep them away from heat sources. If they’re outdoor decorations, make sure they’re not all drawing power from the same outlet or source. Spread them out!
  • Also, check your light strands, particularly for outdoor usage. If you read the box they come on; they’ll tell you whether they’re suited for outdoor usage or not. It’s also doubly important to make sure there aren’t any exposed wires, fraying or loose bulbs. Especially if you’re playing around in the snow, this can cause you to get electrocuted, can cause fires or power outages. Make sure everything is in good, working order.

This holiday season hasn’t and won’t be easy or normal for anyone, but being more mindful of these potential hazards will most definitely make sure that it doesn’t get any worse. It’s been a tough year for all of us, and we’re all eager to partake in a little extra holiday cheer. Just be mindful that you’re channeling it the right way. Good luck, and stay safe!

Your Business Fire Safety Checklist

Now is a great time for your business to think about the things you can do better and fire safety is certainly an area that gets often overlooked and shouldn’t be. So what better time than now to take a look at what needs to happen to get your business up to code and where it should be?

Today, we’re going to review a checklist of things that you should be paying attention to so that your business is where it needs to be with regards to its fire safety. Let’s jump right in!

Alarms

Alarms are one of the first lines of defense when it comes to fires. That’s why it is important to make sure they’re inspected on a routine basis and are in good, working order. It’s also a good time to review your plan of action should the alarm go off.

Extinguishers and Suppression Systems

Just like alarms, it’s important to make sure they’re inspected and tested to make sure they both work and have the right pressure when they get activated. Additionally, make sure your extinguishers are full and operational – as well as making sure they’re located in places where they’re both needed most and accessible.

Lighting

Lighting helps people know where to go. As always, get your lighting inspected and tested, but also make sure people are familiar with where lighting is available and where employees need to go in order to use it.

First Aid

First Aid kits and cabinets should not only be available to your employees but readily accessible as well. Make sure they’re fully stocked and have a plan to make sure they’re regularly getting restocked, especially if your workplace has genuine hazards associated with it. First aid can sometimes mean the difference between routine injury and catastrophe.

Training

Businesses should plan on taking at least one day a year to review not only fire safety but to be trained in how the building’s fire suppression system works and how and when to use extinguishers and other equipment. It’s also a great time to make sure that your preparedness plan is updated and engrained in your employees day to day. Doing so can make all the difference.

Making sure your fire safety prevention is in place and up to date might seem like a daunting task, but if you have routine inspections and maintenance done, all of this can be accomplished seamlessly.

If you have any questions on this or any other fire safety topic, please contact Protegis Fire and Safety.

Stay Safe This Thanksgiving


Next week is Thanksgiving and although our holidays will look different than they have in the past, cooking will still be a big part of the celebration. Therefore, we wanted to share some important things to keep in mind as you prepare your meal.

Top 10 Safety Tips (NFPA)

  • Stay in the kitchen when you are cooking on the stovetop so you can keep an eye on the food.
  • Stay in the home when cooking your turkey, and check on it frequently.
  • Keep children away from the stove. The stove will be hot and kids should stay three feet away.
  • Make sure kids stay away from hot food and liquids. The steam or splash from vegetables, gravy, or coffee could cause serious burns.
  • Keep knives out of the reach of children.
  • Be sure electric cords from an electric knife, coffee maker, plate warmer or mixer are not dangling off the counter within easy reach of a child.
  • Keep matches and utility lighters out of the reach of children — up high in a locked cabinet.
  • Never leave children alone in a room with a lit candle.
  • Keep the floor clear so you don’t trip over kids, toys, pocketbooks, or bags.
  • Make sure your smoke alarms are working. Test them by pushing the test button.

Thanksgiving Fire Facts (NFPA)

  • Thanksgiving is the peak day for home cooking fires, followed by Christmas Day, the day before Thanksgiving, Easter, and Christmas Eve.
  • In 2018, U.S. fire departments responded to an estimated 1,630 home cooking fires on Thanksgiving, the peak day for such fires.
  • Unattended cooking was by far the leading contributing factor in cooking fires and fire deaths.
  • Cooking caused almost half of all reported home fires and home fire injuries, and it is the second leading cause of home fire deaths in 2014-2018.  

Taking extra precautions will help you minimize the risk of injury or fire. Please stay safe and enjoy the holiday.

Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at Protegis Fire & Safety.

The Four Essential Components of Workplace Fire Safety Training Programs

While it’s true that manufacturers and industrial facilities have a greater fire risk, the reality is that any kind of business can experience a fire in the workplace. Because of that, it’s important that your employees are safe and protected from fire hazards, and training them on how to handle themselves in that kind of situation should be a priority for any business owner.

While the stakes are certainly higher when it comes to fire – fire safety is like anything else. The more you’re trained and the more ready you are – the safer you’ll be in the event they actually occur. That being said – there are lots of fire safety companies out there who teach things in a variety of ways – so what’re the things you should look for in a fire safety program? That’s what we’re here to discuss today. 

Here are the four key components that any good workplace fire safety program should have.

Recognizing Hazards

If we’ve said it once, we’ve said it a thousand times – fire prevention is the best way to combat the threat of real fires occurring. Teaching employees to identify potential hazards before they become actual threats is paramount to any workplace fire safety program. 

If there’s heat, a source of ignition, flammable materials, fuel, and the like; employees need to understand the potential for a fire that these things represent. If your employees can recognize situations where they’re working with these things or observe them being used in a way and manner that they shouldn’t be – you’ll prevent a lot of fires from starting in the first place. 

What To Do If There’s A Fire

The next logical step is understanding what they need to do if there’s a fire. There should be a clear-cut chain of command in the event of a fire alarm as well as a thorough once-over as to how fire alarm and fire suppression systems work. Employees should all know how to activate a fire alarm and how to call 911. 

Knowing gives your employee the base knowledge they need in order to react to a situation. They’ll know how to let people know there’s a fire, how to call for help, and who to listen to and seek out. 

Responding Properly To The Fire

Outside of what we talked about, how should employees respond to a fire? This is where things can get ambiguous because some of it depends on the workplace you’re in and the severity and location of the fire. But regardless of that, there are some must-have ingredients in your training. Things like:

  • Your company’s evacuation plan
  • Your employee’s specific roles in executing that plan
  • How to leave the building
  • What to do as they leave the building
  • Where to regroup
  • And what to do if they encounter fire, heat, or smoke as they leave the building.

By covering these things, you can rest assured that your employees will be as prepared as possible. No one wants to think about a fire happening in your building, but if it does – it’s vital that everyone knows exactly what to do. 

Using Fire Extinguishers

The last essential ingredient of a workplace fire safety program is fire extinguisher education. It’s vital to teach employees how to use extinguishers properly. In addition, they’ll be taught about the limitations of these devices, how long they should try to use the device, and when they should flee and escape to safety. No workplace is worth losing someone’s life. 

Understanding when to walk away from a fire is as important as knowing how to fight one. By investing in this aspect of your employees’ training, they’ll be better prepared to be able to respond to fire calmly, safely, and effectively. 

If you would like more information on this or any fire and life safety issue, please contact Protegis Fire & Safety. Stay safe and healthy.