This week (7th – 13th September 2015) is UK Business Safety Week, coordinated by the Chief Fire Officers Association.
The aim of this week is to help businesses reduce their risk in case of fire, protecting their staff, buildings and resources.
The message for this year’s fire risk awareness and fire safety campaign is, “Keep it Simple and Safe”.
Store stock safely, keep corridors, stairs and exits clear.
Identify alarm points so you can warn others.
Make sure doors are closed to stop fires from spreading.
Place things that catch fire away from things that cause fire.
Let someone know if you spot fire safety problems.
Ensure everyone knows what to do if a fire alarm sounds.
There are some simple rules to live by in order to reduce the risk of fire in the workplace:
– Good standards of housekeeping are essential. Keep the workplace tidy.
– Regularly remove combustible waste, including accumulations of dust.
– Keep ignition sources away from combustible materials.
– Keep the use of flammable materials to a minimum.
– Consider how you would recover from the effects of a fire.
– Complete an emergency plan.
– Ensure employees are familiar with emergency plans.
When locking up the premises:
– Switch off unused electrical items and unplug where possible.
– Check smokers materials are not left smoldering.
– Ensure any naked flames are extinguished.
– Check highly flammable materials are safely stored.
– Make sure the premises is secured against any unauthorised entry.
These messages are particularly relevant in the run up to winter, as for some businesses this could mean extra staff and stock to deal with the festive rush. Be aware of these seasonal changes with making fire safety provisions.
In the past decade there have been:
11,156 fires in retail and vehicle trade premises
8,837 fires in recreational and cultural services
5,041 fires in restaurants, cafes and pubs
4,208 fires in schools
3,648 fires in hospitals and healthcare facilities
2,823 fires in industrial premises
1,846 fires in hotels, hostels, boarding houses etc.