Workplace Fire Prevention: Being Proactive Means Less Risk

workplace with risk of fire

Fire prevention is part of an effective workplace safety plan for ANY organization.

But what exactly is fire prevention?

Is it just being prepared to fight fires when they happen?

As the word “prevention” would suggest, fire prevention is all about getting out ahead of fires. The fire prevention concept encompasses both preventing fires from starting, as well as managing small fires (flare-ups, sparks, etc.) quickly so that they do not spread and become larger scale fires that threaten the safety of your workplace.

In this edition of the ACT Workplace Safety Blog we’ll explore effective fire prevention tips that you can incorporate into your workplace safety and safety training program.

WORKPLACE FIRE PREVENTION: A TWO-PRONGED EFFORT

welding sparks flying in workplaceAs we stated earlier, fire prevention doesn’t just mean putting out fires well – thought that is a crucial component of workplace safety – but also refers to proactive measures to lessen the chances of a fire starting in the first place.

Some workplaces are more prone to fire risk than others.

Every workplace has some risk of fire, however, and thus every team should be prepared to put out fires rapidly and to prevent fires to the greatest extent possible.

If your workplace or job site involves work roles or activities that carry a greater fire danger component, fire prevention safety training and fire safety awareness is key.

Workers should be adequately trained on their equipment & gear to be able to:

  • fire extinguisher in workplaceWork safely to avoid starting fires in the first place
  • Be able to put out small fires (sparks, smouldering, flareups, etc.) quickly so as to avoid the spread of fire into something much worse

In addition, anyone working in the proximity of equipment or activities that carry a fire risk must be adequately trained on:

  • How to respond quickly & effectively to a fire nearby
  • How to extinguish a small fire
  • Whom to contact when a fire occurs
  • How to report fire hazards in the workplace

This last one is extremely important in proactive fire prevention in the workplace.

IDENTIFYING, REPORTING AND FIXING FIRE HAZARDS IN THE WORKPLACE

No workplace is perfect.

There is always room for improvement when it comes to workplace safety.

When it comes to fire prevention in the workplace, one of the most important elements is to:

  • construction project with risk of fireIdentify fire risk
  • Report the fire risk (element or activity) through proper management / supervisor channel(s)
  • (Management) remedy the fire risk by correcting behaviour (re-training) or re-configuring the work area and/or equipment

No worker should ever hesitate to report a fire risk. This is true whether a configuration, work station or workplace is not ideal for fire safety, or whether a fellow worker is engaging in an activity (e.g. doing their job incorrectly) that is resulting in a heightened fire risk.

Whistleblowers should be encouraged and rewarded in their roles of fire prevention.

Similarly, manager due diligence must be performed to assess the ongoing risk of fire, and implementations must be made to lower that risk.

HOW ACT CAN HELP WITH WORKPLACE FIRE PREVENTION

As you can see, fire prevention in the workplace is an ongoing effort, one that requires manager due diligence, a proactive fire prevention program and an effective fire prevention safety training program.

Advanced Consulting & Training, a leader in Ontario workplace safety training and implementation, has a comprehensive offering of fire prevention consulting and fire safety training programs.

Whether you need ongoing fire safety training for your teams, require an in-depth fire safety audit or are looking for help in manager due diligence, we can help.

Contact us today to find out more.