Fire can happen anytime, anywhere, and unexpectedly, so it's essential to ensure safety measures are put in place. Also, such precautions are matters that require the awareness of everybody in your commercial building as even a single spark can burn down a building and its content, as well as cost people's lives.
In most cases, when the fire starts spreading, it’s often difficult to put out that it’d always require the help of firefighters. And, even with the modern ways and the latest fire extinguisher that firefighters use to curb fires, you just can’t afford to be too complacent.
That said, here are a few tips to ensure fire safety in your commercial building:
1. Ensure Regular Maintenance Of Fire Safety Equipment
Regular maintenance of fire safety equipment is mandatory, especially for commercial buildings. Replace worn-out paraphernalia and ensure the electrical wiring isn’t faulty. Failure to take this crucial step is one of the reasons why fires ensue.
In addition, ensure to hire the services of a fire service company. They’ll conduct assessments, such as fire extinguisher testing, to ensure everything is performing at its best.
2. Further Everyone’s Knowledge Of Fire Safety
Fire can do significant damage to your commercial building and the people around it. Therefore, you should take time away from work to study and understand fire safety measures. As the manager or business owner, you should ensure you and your team members undergo training and take classes on such protocols and other relevant areas.
It’s essential to further everyone’s knowledge of fire safety and all fire hazards. You may invite fire officers and fire consultants to do discussions on such topics, including how to properly comply with state regulations, which is particularly important if you’re the building owner.
3. Ensure Emergency Exit Routes
An emergency exit route refers to an uninterrupted path from any point in a building to a safe and secure place. It consists of three parts—exit access, exit, and exit discharge.
Exit access is a lane that leads to the exit, while the exit is generally a path, which is separated from all the other areas of the building, that leads to the exit discharge. Finally, the exit discharge is what directly leads people to a place of refuge, such as a street, public way, etc.
Normally, a commercial building should have two exit routes, although this mostly depends on the size of the commercial building and the number of people. Constructors should locate these exit routes far away from each other in case one stops working. Plus, these exit routes should be free from explosives and shouldn’t be congested with unnecessary objects.
Any building should always be designed with fire safety in mind. In addition, it should have an evacuation strategy not only for fires, but also for any other threatening occurrences, such as natural disasters.
4. Ensure Your Fire Detection System Is Working Properly
This is another vital tip for commercial building fire safety. You should ensure your fire detection system is updated and functioning as it should. As much as possible, it should be the latest version and must be sensitive to the first signs of fire.
Commercial buildings should be built with high-quality detectors and other fire suppression systems so they can go off anytime there’s smoke in the air. These detectors are connected with the fire department so that they can be instantaneously alerted in case of fire.
5. Create Smoking Zones
It's crucial to create smoking zones for your employees. It’s always advised to set aside a fireproof room away from the commercial building. Also, it's necessary to let your employees understand the importance of properly disposing of smoking materials.
Furthermore, there should be a no smoking policy in the main building itself to prevent fire outbreaks, especially if the cigarettes aren't discarded the right way. Also, having people smoking within the main business building can create false fire alarms, which can startle your employees and clients.
6. Appoint Fire Wardens
It'd be best to assign people experienced in fire situations as fire wardens. They’ll make sure that fire safety measures are followed by all concerned parties. Also, they know exactly what to do in case a fire breaks out.
Moreover, the fire wardens are required to periodically carry out various assessments to ensure that the building remains free of hire hazards, and that fire safety equipment is fully functional.
Fire safety in a commercial building is essential because it doesn’t only protect the structure itself, but also the business and the lives of people. Thus, following suitable protocols and measures can make a lot of difference.