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A Short Guide on How to Make Your Business Safe from Fire

Aug 23, 2008
Fires are one of the most destructive forces on the planet. They can easily destroy everything youve worked for and can even claim the lives of those in your small business, even your own life. Plus, there are recently enacted guidelines in England and northern Ireland that now require the responsible person to take actions in order to ensure the safety of the property. Below are some steps to help you make your small business safer from the risk of fire.

Identifying Fire Risks

Before you can make your business safe, you must identify what could be putting it at risk of a fire. That means you need to take note of anything that might start a fire, burn in a fire, or intensify a fire. While that may seem like a tall order, it is just the first important step in making changes to improve the safety of your building.

Once youve determined what these risks are youll need to begin making changes. For example, if you notice that something which could possibly ignite a fire, such as a portable heater, is located near combustible materials, such as storage boxes, you could move the ignition source into another room or replace it with something that is less likely to start a fire.

Adding Fire Safety Necessities

Two of the greatest tools you can have in your small business to improve fire safety are the fire extinguisher and the smoke alarm. The fire extinguisher can help you stop the spread of a fire before it can cause too much damage or before it can become life or property-threatening. Remember you should have one extinguisher for every 200 square meters of floor space to provide the maximum safety possible.

The smoke alarm can be useful because it will alert you to the danger usually before the first flames appear. Even if the fire has already started, the smoke alarm can alert you to take immediate action, such as grabbing the extinguisher and/or calling the fire department. It can also expedite the evacuation of the premises and can save lives. Be sure to check the batteries periodically to ensure it is working properly.

Taking Precautions

There are some other things you can do to ensure that your small business is safe from fire. For example, you need to minimize clutter whenever possible. Clutter can help contribute to fires by making it harder for people to reach them with the proper equipment and in adding to their intensity. The clutter can also make it more difficult to escape safely from your building.

In addition, you should create a fire plan so that everyone in the building knows what actions to take in the event of a fire and what to do if they see the signs of a fire. Because fires can create panic, using drills to practice these plans is going to be essential to their success.
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