Arson is on the increase but there are steps business owners can take to help prevent arson. Arson is a crime that many business owners may not even have considered. It’s a major form of property destruction, which can be very costly for business owners to recover from. Recent figures show that incidents of arson continue to rise. Indeed headlines back this up with frequent stories reporting incidents of arson in garages, restaurants and even a primary school.
There is concern that this upward trend could continue under economic uncertainty. Cases are often attributed to vandalism and anger over unemployment, thought statistics show that incidents of arson are unplanned and opportunistic.
There are a number of ways that businesses can take precautions against arson. Here we look at some of the most effective measures you can employ in order to keep your premises safe.
The key role of staff in preventing arson
If you have staff working for you then it’s important that they know what their responsibilities are when it comes to keeping watch over your premises. They should be trained so that they understand how to spot suspicious activity and report any problems immediately. Indeed it is important to report suspicious activity to the authorities.
Keeping waste and recycling bins in a secure area away from your main building is one simple step business owners could consider to lower their risk of arson. Again this involves training staff to not leave bags of rubbish or recycling near the business premises. Having an emergency contact number for the business owner or premises manager will help if something does go wrong.
Fire Protection Systems
Installing an audible fire alarm in your premises might not prevent arson, but it could seriously limit the damage cause by such an attack. This could save lives as well as money by preventing damage to your property. The best way to ensure this happens is to hire professional installation services. It is important to get regular maintenance checks of your fire protection systems including fire alarms and extinguishers carried out by a fire protection company.
It is also possible to have your fire alarm system monitored, to automatically contact the fire brigade in the event of an activation, saving precious minutes in the event of a fire. For some businesses, a monitored fire alarm may be a requirement of your insurers.
It may seem like common sense, but having adequate insurance coverage can make all the difference between being able to afford repairs after something goes wrong and not being able to do anything about it at all. Contacting an insurance company that specializes in arson prevention can help a business to avoid vandalism, damage and arson.
It’s important for businesses to understand what they own, who has access to their security measures. Considering how these measures can be breached is also crucial. Identifying and rectifying weakness in your security can help prevent arson. It’s also vital to know where your assets lie so you can protect them from theft or damage.
The full suite of security systems can offer help in preventing arson:
Access control systems can log staff members in and out of the building and provide a “roll call” in the event of a fire. This type of system can also allow access to specific areas for some members of staff, and restrict access to other areas as required.
An intruder alarm system will alert you if someone tries to break into or set fire to your building. Indeed in some cases it has been a monitored intruder alarm which raised the alarm in the case of a fire. Intruder alarms also offer security protection and, as with fire alarms, they can be remotely monitored. A security alarm system should not be used in place of a fire alarm system, but can work alongside one.
Can CCTV prevent arson?
One popular idea is to install proactive security cameras with notifications to prevent arson. CCTV does deter criminals. It is well documented that people behave differently when they know they are under surveillance. It can also be used as evidence to catch and bring those responsible to justice. Proactive CCTV goes one step further and notifies business owners when a person is on their premises. It also gives an audible warning to the trespassers.
Businesses who implement these precautions can drastically reduce the likelihood of arson.
Keybury Fire & Security are BAFE & NSI Gold approved for fire alarm systems. This includes the design, installation, commissioning and maintenance of fire alarms. Our team are FIA trained and we have four decades of experience in the industry. Contact us today for a free fire alarm survey. Call us now on 0800 458 7486. Alternatively complete our form and we’ll get back to you.