Fire Hazards – How To Identify Them And Protect Your Business-www.xunbo.cc

The well known phrase ‘prevention is better than cure’ is particularly pertinent when it .es to fire safety. A fire at your business premises could not only disrupt your business, but threaten the entire future of your business. Over 70% of businesses involved in a fire either do not reopen at all, or fail within three years. In addition to this is the possible personal impact on the lives of your employees and their families. Some simple fire safety measures are therefore well worth a bit of effort, in order to protect your business in the long term. Identifying fire hazards is the first step in carrying out a Fire Risk Assessment, which is now a legal requirement for all UK Businesses. To identify fire hazards, you first need to understand what is required for a fire to start. This can be summarised as follows: A source of ignition Fuel Oxygen Sources of ignition: The nature of your business will dictate the nature and extent of possible ignition sources in your workplace. These will vary from the obvious naked flames (welding and other ‘hot works’) to the less obvious, such as electrical equipment which could get hot if a fault develops. Consider the following: Gas cookers, candles or any equipment using a naked flame Any type of heater, but particularly gas fired with an open flame Anything involving heat or sparks, such as shrink-wrapping, welding, etc Smoking areas and disposal of cigarettes and matches Electrical equipment – get portable appliances checked regularly All lighting equipment – ensure materials are not stored close to any lights that get hot Fuel: Fuel is basically anything that will burn. Concentrate on .bustible materials that are present in sufficient quantity to allow a fire to spread. Consider the following: All paper including letterheads, envelopes and archived files Printed materials and empty boxes Flammable liquids such as paint, varnishes, thinners, etc Soft furnishings such as curtains, blinds and other textiles Any flammable gases stored on the premises Plastic materials including foam filled furniture, plastic point of sale displays, etc Oxygen: This is essentially the air around us. Think about the ways in which air can move around your premises. For small premises this may just be a few doors and windows, but in more .plex spaces there could be several ventilation, cooling and heating systems, with extensive ducting around the building. Pay particular attention to fire doors. A wedged open fire door may as well not be there, as it does nothing to cut off the supply of oxygen to a fire. If you consider all the above, you have .pleted the first step in carrying out your own Fire Risk Assessment. 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