Fire Safety Training: Fire Safety Training at Place of Work
Why is fire safety training important? Can you imagine being clueless when a fire accident happens? Fire is often the biggest safety risk any businesses ever has. Without fire safety training your insurances may not be valid and your staff are left vulnerable.
These are the simple steps for training your staff in your fire safety.
Within any commercial setting, it’s a legal requirement for certain members of staff to be trained in fire safety procedures – becoming your environment’s designated fire wardens as a result.
The person trained should have a clear understanding of the overall duties and responsibilities they have as a fire warden.
This will include what action they should take on the discovery of a fire, know the difference between different fire classes, which extinguisher to use for which fire and what the evacuation procedure is.
The picture above is a fire triangle. In understanding the fire triangle, a fire needs three elements for it to ignite – oxygen, fuel and heat – and a fire can be extinguished by removing one of these elements.
For example, when using a fire blanket to cover a fire can remove the oxygen supply from the fire, therefore putting the fire out.
Fires destroy property, cause injuries, and take lives. Many are fully aware of this but did not take any serious action to prevent it.
A fire in the workplace can also mean the termination of jobs, as many of the offices and factories destroyed by fire in Canada are never rebuilt.
One of the key strategies for maintaining a safe workplace and preventing fires is fire safety training.
With proper training, workers can eliminate fire hazards and respond quickly and efficiently if a fire breaks out. Without proper training, a small occurrence can quickly grow to become a major incident with devastating outcomes.
Everyone is at risk if there is a fire. However, there are some workers who may be at greater risk because of when or where they work, or because they’re not familiar with the premises or the equipment at the worksite.
Therefore, fire safety awareness training must be made to every staff. The objective of this is for staff to know how to reduce fire risks, deal with fires and escape safely in the event of a fire.
Fire safety training can teach workers how to recognize fire hazards, conduct a fire safety risk assessment, prevent a workplace fire, and respond if a fire occurs.
Through fire safety training workers will learn the company’s emergency plan, the worker’s role in the emergency plan, how to activate the fire alarm so the building occupants can escape, how to fight a small fire with a portable fire extinguisher and what to do if they encounter heat or smoke upon exiting.
Workers also need to know where designated assembly areas are located outside the building. In addition to that, they need to leave the area immediately when a fire event happens, closing all the doors behind them.
Workers and employers need to take fire drills seriously and learn from them to improve response.
By practising what to do in a fire, flaws in the emergency plan can be revealed and those faults can then be addressed. Practice also builds confidence and helps keep everyone calms in the event of a real fire.
Every worker needs to know how to use a fire extinguisher. Most workplaces contain portable fire extinguishers. Bear in mind that fire extinguishers can only put out small, contained fires, such as a fire in a wastebasket.
Extinguishers in different workplaces may or may not be suitable for dealing with grease or electrical fires.
Workers that haven’t received training in the proper use of portable extinguishers should not attempt to fight a fire.
Through training workers learn to never fight a fire:
- if the fire is large or spreading
- if their escape route may be blocked by the spread of fire
- if they are not trained in the correct use of the extinguisher or are unsure of the type of fire
In conclusion, everyone is responsible for preventing fires in the workplace – employers and employees alike. In addition to possible injury and loss of life, a serious fire can close down a workplace resulting in significant job losses.
It is possible to reduce the threat of fire to people and property by teaching everyone to work together to prevent fires with comprehensive fire safety training.