Did you know that only 50 per cent of building occupants feel confident in knowing what action to take during an emergency? Even less know how to properly operate a fire extinguisher.
Fire protection equipment is an important part of any business, and so is a fire safety plan. Both work in tandem to ensure that no one is left behind in case of an emergency, which is important since these things can happen at any given time. But where do you even begin?
Knowing local and national laws, how to educate your employees, and even what equipment you need can be a large task to learn, but it isn’t impossible. Below are the 7 types of fire protection equipment you need in your office.
1. Fire Extinguishers
A portable fire extinguisher is actually a requirement in many homes, markets, offices, and other environments that you commonly visit. They’re your first line of defence, and may even be the most important tool in your fire safety arsenal.
The amount of and type of fire extinguishers you’re going to need depends on the size of your building and the type of work you do.
2. Fire Alarm System
Having a fire alarm system is crucial to any fire suppression system. These alarms are often what triggers the sprinkler system, and what is going to save your building and the people inside of it. Once these alarms are triggered, people are alerted, given a set amount of time to evacuate, and then the sprinklers turn on.
These systems are controlled by fire indicator panels (FIPs) and work to receive information from heat and smoke detectors. Manual triggers can also be incorporated.
No matter what type of system you have, it’s going to include smoke alarms and a FIP.
The kind of fire alarm system you need is going to depend on your business and its needs, along with the type of building, but the three main systems are:
This isn’t the last component, though. There are more things to consider.
3. Sprinkler Systems
Sprinkler systems are important for any workplace. They use a minimal amount of water to decrease the size of fires. Often, water is only released when the temperate rises and only in a designated area around the fire itself.
By limiting the fire’s size, as well as the amount of water used to put it out, you preserve your workplace and ensure a minimal amount of damage.
4. Exit Signs and Emergency Lighting
Exit signs are going to mark the route that occupants take for evacuations. These signs are often equipped with a battery backup that kicks in when power outages occur.
Emergency lights are designed to work with other components of a fire safety system to guide people to safety during a fire. It connects to the main lighting of a building and includes a battery pack in case of power failure. A fire protection specialist will be able to advise the correct locations for the exit signs and emergency lighting. You should always have a professional design and install all emergency lighting systems, and keep them on a regular maintenance schedule.
5. Automated External Defibrillators and First Aid Kits
Automated external defibrillators (AEDs) are small, portable devices that can diagnose and treat cardiac arrest using electric shocks. When it’s used correctly, these machines can be enough to restore a patient’s heart rhythm long enough for emergency personnel to arrive.
The AED, however, only treats a heart in ventricular fibrillation. The heart does not respond to electrical currents when in cardiac arrest without ventricular fibrillation, but still needs immediate medical attention.
First aid kits are important for everyday scratches, scrapes, and burns, and are actually required to be in the workplace. All employees must have access to first aid equipment, facilities, and trained first aiders, though what you have to have varies by business.
Another smart thing to have in place — especially for fire safety.
6. Safety Signage
Safety signage is more than emergency exit signs. It can depict your business’s evacuation plan, as well as local law, workplace law, sprinkler signs, and even extinguisher signs.
It may be an afterthought, but safety signage is important for your building and everyone inside of it.
7. Have a Plan
While you can have all the fire prevention and protection equipment in the world, it’s all for naught if you don’t have a safety plan in place. Ensuring that there is a solid plan in place in case of fires or other emergencies is just the first step.
Once you’ve created a solid fire safety plan, it’s crucial to ensure that everyone in your building knows what to do when there is a safety hazard.
Get Your Fire Protection Equipment Today
Ensure your own safety and the safety of others by investing in quality fire protection equipment today. This, combined with adhering to local safety laws and training employees can help reduce the risk of a fire breaking out in your office immensely.