In the event of a fire, your first priority should always be the safety of yourself and your employees. Not all companies think a fire could happen to them, but if it does, it’s always prudent to have several important plans in place. Here are some things all companies and company owners should know about the proper way to handle things if a fire were to occur.
Communicate With Your Employees
All employees old and new should know what the plan is if a fire happens. Make sure everyone knows exactly where to exit from the building if a fire occurs. They should also know the location of fire extinguishers in places like the break room and warehouse. Exit plans should be prominently posted throughout the building so that everyone is clear on where to go if a fire happens. It also can’t hurt to hold fire drills every so often just to ensure that everyone is on the same page.
Backup Your Data
Many times, businesses don’t think about fires when it comes to data loss. Things like invoice paperwork, company ledgers, and other important information can become permanently destroyed when a fire happens. Back everything you have up onto a remote server or a cloud platform. This can be invaluable if a fire happens and you have no access to hard copies of financial records or employee information. Getting all of your data virtually stored can be a real lifesaver in cases like this.
Practice Good Habits
For everyone’s protection, smoking should never be allowed inside of the building. Make it clear to everyone that smokers must go outside if they need to smoke a cigarette, and post no-smoking signs throughout the building. Make sure that all employees are using their electrical outlets properly and are not “overstuffing” them with too many items plugged in. Keep work areas free of clutter and remove any paper lying around. Advise everyone to turn all computers and lights off at the end of each day. These simple good habits can help to prevent fires from occurring.
Develop A Plan
Ask your human resources personnel to draft an official company plan that should be followed in the event of a fire. This plan should include your exit strategy and assign someone to be the point of contact to call the fire department and make sure everyone is accounted for. Give someone the title of safety officer who can handle emergency situations when they occur. Write up instructions for employees to follow when a fire happens, like not gathering their things or making phone calls once the fire alarm goes off. If everyone is clear on the fire policy put in place, it can help ensure that all employees are able to get out safe and sound.