10 Office Fire Safety Tips
When it comes to fire safety, most workplaces have room for improvement. Office spaces are no exception.
Does Your Office Contain Fire Safety Hazards?
When a fire starts in an office, it can grow quickly if not properly contained. Common equipment like wooden furniture, paper, and drywall can all contribute to the spread.
To keep your workplace protected, here are our top 10 office fire safety tips:
Proper Cigarette Disposal
Most offices in the US don’t permit indoor smoking. However, many employees take outdoor smoke breaks. If cigarette butts aren’t properly disposed of, they could catch fire in a trash receptacle or a patch of leaves.
To prevent a cigarette fire, provide a safe disposal solution such as a smokers’ pole. Clean it out regularly and provide information on proper use. If butts build up inside a receptacle and a lit cigarette is added, the inside of the receptacle can catch fire.
Manage Flammable Materials Safely
Depending on your industry, your workplace may contain flammable liquids, gases, and other hazardous materials. Store them in dry, secure, and temperature-compliant spaces. Restrict access to those areas to authorized personnel only.
Regularly inspect flammable materials containers and be sure to promptly address any structural issues within the containers and their storage spaces.
Don’t Daisy Chain Cables
Daisy chaining is the practice of connecting multiple extension cords or power strips together to reach an outlet. This can cause a power surge that could result in an electrical fire.
Instead of daisy chaining, invest in extension cords that are long enough for use without additional connections. Regularly inspect your cords and outlets to ensure that they aren’t damaged, broken, or sparking.
Mind Your Space Heaters
Many office spaces contain large, wide-open areas that tend to get quite cold. Some employers permit their staff to bring in space heaters to warm up their immediate areas.
If a space heater is left on, it can overheat and cause a fire. So, ensure that they’re always turned off before locking up for the night. Establish a policy that ensures that someone is always responsible for confirming that all space heaters and similar appliances have been turned off at the end of each day.
Check Your Fire Extinguishers
Check that your office fire extinguishers have not expired. If they have, replace them as soon as possible. If a fire breaks out and you don’t have a working extinguisher, the risks for safety hazards and property damage will be much higher.
Dust is highly combustible. Allowing dust to accumulate on indoor surfaces creates a fire hazard. Make sure that your maintenance crew dusts surfaces and air vents frequently to prevent buildup.
Test Your Smoke Alarms
Test smoke alarms often. Include testing with regularly scheduled events to be sure that it gets done. The best time to test your alarms is after regular business hours so that the noise doesn’t create a distraction.
Safe Kitchen Management
A common office fire hazard is overheated food catching fire in a workplace oven or microwave. To prevent a kitchen fire from catching or spreading, take these steps:
- Be sure your kitchen’s smoke detector is working and your fire extinguisher isn’t expired
- Consider a policy that discourages employees from leaving food unattended while it’s in the oven, microwave, toaster, or other heated kitchen appliance
Well-Lit Exit Signs
Your building exits should be clearly highlighted throughout the workplace. Whether you use highly visual signage, light-up signs, or another method, make sure everyone knows where the fire exits are so that a speedy evacuation could occur in the event of a fire.
Close the Gaps in Your Doors
If a fire breaks out in an individual office, smoke and flames can quickly spread through the doorway if the door is not properly protected. That’s why all interior doors should be fire-rated doors.
Fire-rated doors are more likely than regular doors to withstand fire damage and help contain the spread of a blaze.
Some doors have gaps that could increase the risk of a fire escaping a room and spreading throughout a building. To combat this hazard, Active Fire Door Products offers a wide range of fire-rated door accessories to fill in doorway gaps.
Closing doorway gaps helps secure your building against the spread of a fire. Thus, property is better protected and first responders are more able to arrive in time to limit a fire’s damage.
Office Fire Safety Upgrades
Fill in your office’s doorway gaps to prevent the spread of smoke and flames. Visit the Active Fire Door Products online store for gap fillers, strike extensions, and frame plugs to help protect your workplace. Contact us any time to discuss your workplace fire safety solutions.