One of the most important objectives of a business owner or an employer is to keep workers, customers, visitors and the facility as well as the surrounding community safe from fire hazards and their catastrophic impacts. Although all fire hazards are not predictable and hundred percent fire protection is near impossible, most of the industrial fires are preventable. Fire prevention and fire protection are proactive approaches to fire safety. In fact, they both go hand in hand and play important role in developing a good fire safety plan.
Essentially, prevention seeks actions of stopping something harmful from arising or happening. Since it is a proactive process, the fire prevention activities start even before a fire ignites. It ensures that a fire does not occur in the first place.
A robust fire prevention plan may include many tasks including facility inspection to identify fire vulnerable conditions such as, haphazard housekeeping, overloaded electric outlets, poor maintenance, improperly stored inventory, smoking indoors, etc. After identifying the hazards or vulnerabilities and subsequent risk assessment, it is employers’ responsibility to take necessary steps to eliminate such hazards or to mitigate the risk of fire.
Your organizational safety policy in regards with strictly following Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and Method Statements, regularly cleaning wood-burning fireplaces, separating combustible material & fire sources and employing qualified electrician to do electrical maintenance works can also help ward off any fire related incident. Besides, training your employees, disseminating fire-hazard education and posting adequate signage or notice could greatly help reduce human errors and probability of catching a fire.
Fire protection measure ensures that your property is armed with enough equipment to take on a fire in a timely and effective manner. Fire protection is a combination of different fire safety equipment and procedures. It often includes equipment like fire alarms, extinguishers, and sprinkler systems. When combined together smartly, these systems could provide your facility with a good fire protection.
The foremost priority of fire protection is to make sure the occupants of your building are safe. That’s why fire alarms and smoke detectors are the foundation of any fire protection system. These devices detect heat and smoke, sounding the alarm so everyone in the facility can evacuate to safety. The next priority is to stop the spread of fire to limit damage to your property. Fire Extinguishers, Automatic Sprinklers, and Automatic Fire Suppression Systems, etc. are some of the most common fire protection equipment. Using fire resistant building materials could also help minimize the spread of a blaze if/when a fire breaks out.
Mere installing fire extinguisher, smoke detector and fire sprinklers may not be enough. Care must be taken to train your employees on fire response procedure and periodically check and maintain equipment readiness to ensure their proper functionality when you need them most. Taking these steps ensures that the building is set up to fight a fire if a blaze breaks out.
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