No one wants to think about what could happen if their business caught on fire. However, considering your risk factor and making sure you are well equipped in case of a fire could save your building and -more importantly- human lives.
If you want to ensure your business have the best possible odds in case of a fire, consider the following factors and choose a fire protection system that best meets your needs:
Consider Your Risks
You should consider the nature of your building and create a fire protection plan accordingly. In example, if your business has commercial-grade kitchens, you will want to have a more robust fire suppression system around the cooking equipment, as cooking equipment are deemed the cause of 29.3% of nonresidential fires- more than any other risk factors.
On the other hand, if you are considering hospital fire protection services, the set vulnerabilities you are working with is so unique that you would want to work with a fire protection company who specifically specializes in hospital fire protection services. A hospital has a wide range of sensitive and unique factors, like pure oxygen dense areas, critical operating equipment, and people in fragile health conditions, that only a specialist in hospital fire protection services would understand and know how to properly prepare for. However, the fire protection necessary in a hospital would be overkill in a smoothie shop. Create a plan based on the specific set of risks in your business. Finding your vulnerabilities and protecting them could put out a fire before it starts.
Plan Around Your Building Code
When planning your fire protection plan, make sure you discuss the building code with your fire protection contractor. You don’t want to invest the money and effort into a fire protection system only to realize that you’re not in compliance with the building code. Keep in mind however, that building fire codes only require a minimum level of protection. Start planning your fire protection system at the code-level, and then add protection to cover any extra vulnerabilities you have.
There are so many options on the fire protection market. A simple measure like installing smoke alarms cuts the risk of someone dying in a fire by one-third. If you have a sprinkler system in your building, the risk of having a fatal fire is cut by 80%. In fact, the National Fire Protection Association has no record of more than two fatalities in a structure fire where there was a sprinkler system. Adding fire extinguishers might be a good idea in highest risk areas- studies show that 98% of people are able to operate a fire extinguisher and put a fire out without any training. If you choose a fire protection system that combines alarms and automatic sprinklers and equipment, your risk of fire and loss of life are reduced by 50%. Discuss the fire protection options with your fire protection company and find a solution that best covers your risk and budget needs.
Does your business have a comprehensive fire protection plan? What are the greatest fire risks in your building? What fire protection equipment are you using to protect yourself? Please leave us a comment with the details!