A fire can break out anywhere at any time. The workplace is no different, which is why there are laws governing fire preparedness in the workplace. Some industries that deal with hazardous and flammable materials, such as restaurants, printing agencies, or car manufacturing facilities, have stringent safety protocols to keep everyone safe. Don’t think you are immune to accidental fires simply because you work in an office, though. Fires can pop up in a corporate setting too, so it pays to be prepared. Use these fire prevention tips for work to keep yourself and your team safe.
Conduct Regular Fire Drills
Having an annual fire drill will keep everyone safe in the event of a fire. Everyone should know the drill—it’s the same as in school. Make sure everyone knows the quickest way out of the building so they can escape to safety. Designate a rally point a safe distance from the building and take roll call at that location. The last person to leave should do a sweep of the building to make sure everyone is out.
Dispose of Hazardous Materials Properly
Dispose of any hazardous materials in a metal container with a lid. Then, send them to a proper disposal site. Hazardous waste includes anything from chemicals to cleaning solutions. Collect and dispose of flammable and combustible waste materials frequently to avoid a fire.
Isolate Dangerous Materials
Dangerous materials should have a designated space that only they occupy. Then, if there is a fire, it will be contained to one spot and will be easier to extinguish. You should store pressurized tanks and aerosol cans in an enclosed space in the event they explode. The enclosed space will contain the explosion and will prevent hazardous items from flying around the building and injuring someone.
Remove Trip Hazards
When there is an actual fire, panic will likely set in among the workers. They will likely be in such a rush to evacuate that they won’t look where they are going. Removing any trip hazards such as cords, pallets, and small machinery will ensure there is a direct path out of the building, thereby preventing people from falling in the rush.
Follow OSHA Guidelines
The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has the definitive fire prevention tips for work. They created these rules to make sure that business owners don’t take short cuts and put lives in danger. If you suspect your business is in violation of any of these guidelines, contact OSHA’s anonymous whistleblower hotline.
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