Learn Before the Burn
By: Mark Williams
Is your workplace or home fire proof? Each year, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) celebrates National Fire Safety Month in October with Oct. 7th-13th being national fire prevention week and Oct. 13th being National Home Fire Drill Day. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, in 2016, there were 88 occupational fatalities as a result of workplace fires or explosions. This is down from 2015, in which there were 121. While the statistics show that the number of fatalities due to fires or explosions in the workplace is on a downward slope, any number other than 0 is unacceptable and demands the attention from management, safety professionals and employees in every company. Not only do fires present a severe life safety hazard, they also can be detrimental to business success due to the possible destruction of business equipment and facilities. This campaign serves as a reminder to us all of the importance of fire safety awareness in both the workplace and our home lives.
Fire safety awareness in the workplace should be second nature and should be translated into our personal lives to keep our loved ones safe in the event of a fire as well. Take time this month to have a fire safety talk with your department at work. Review your emergency action plan, communicate supervisory roles, and walk evacuation routes with your team. In times of crisis, it is of human nature to rely on memory created through practice. October is the perfect time to conduct a fire drill before a real-life event occurs. Ensure nobody is left behind and all are in tune with their life safety route!
The safety reminders communicated in the work place can be easily translated to fire safety in the home. Establish a family emergency action plan, discuss escape routes with family members, and locate fire extinguishers in your home. Additionally, conduct a mock fire drill with your family members to ensure you and your loved ones know how to get out safely. During this drill, outline meeting places that are at a safe distance from the home. Designate a neighbor to contact for help in the event of an emergency. Simple exercises such as the aforementioned could mean the difference maker in your family making it out alive in the event of a fire in your home.
Below are key components to ensuring your workplace and home are fireproof:
Remember it is always better to be proactive rather than reactive and it is best to alleviate hazards or hiccups in times of peace than in times of chaos. Utilize the above tips to reduce the risk for catastrophe or at least minimize the damage. The reality is that fire emergencies and disaster situations can strike anyone, anytime, anywhere. So, remember, if a fire occurs in your workplace or home, don’t panic, A-C-T:
Related Topics: Workplace Safety, Fire Prevention, Safety Hazards, Behavior Based Safety, Safety Tips, Safety Culture, Emergency Action Plan, Home Safety, Jobsite Safety, Safety Awareness, Safety Articles