Workplace fires account for many injuries and deaths as well as millions of dollars worth of property damage and loss every year. Many of them can be stopped with careful on-the-job fire prevention techniques.
It sounds simple, but the most effective way to fight fire is to keep a fire from starting in the first place. Combustion can only take place when oxygen, heat and fuel are present at the same time. Basic fire prevention is to keep these elements apart.
It's up to you to do everything possible to prevent a workplace fire. Here are some tips:
• Inspect storage facilities regularly for fire hazards. Risk increases when large volumes of materials are stored closely together.
• Take extra precautions with combustible materials and flammable liquids. They pose a great risk for workplace fire. Keep combustible materials and flammable liquids away from lights and machinery. Fuels, paints and flammable solvents should be kept in approved storage containers. Dispose of oily rags in tight metal containers which are emptied daily.
• Keep all heating equipment, including vent pipes and chimneys, in good operating condition. Vents and smoke pipes should be sealed and located away from combustible materials.
• Electrical equipment can be a source of ignition. All wiring should be in good condition, properly supported and adequately protected from physical damage. Be sure extension cords and appliance cords are the correct size, and not frayed or worn. The covers of all junction, switch outlet and panel boxes must be properly secured. Each circuit must have a fuse or breaker of no greater rated capacity than the circuit conductor.
• Smoke alarms and fire detectors should be placed in areas where fires may start. Test battery-operated detectors and alarms monthly, and replace the batteries at least once a year.
• Do not smoke in areas where NO SMOKING signs are placed. They are there for a reason.
You should know the location of fire extinguishers and other firefighting equipment as well as how to use them.
You should also know the procedures to follow in case of fire and the correct fire exits to use for escape. Know which equipment and operations to shut down before you leave your post. Keep escape routes and fire exits clear.
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Call 1-800-980-4080 and speak to a representative about how we can help you reinforce and improve your safety program, or go online and purchase new safety posters when you’re ready.