Unexpected fires are a frequent occurrence at many different industrial jobsites. As such, it’s a good idea to try to protect your site from as many fire dangers as possible. The only problem is that there are so many ways to accidentally start a fire that it’s unlikely that you remember all of them. That’s why we’ve taken the time to list out the top jobsite fire prevention tips, along with some extras that we think are crucial to know about.
Improve Fire Safety Training
All companies already have training in place for legal reasons, but there is a good chance that they only cover what they absolutely have to. Take the time to go more in-depth with employees on this topic during training because otherwise, there’s a good chance that they’ll handle the situation poorly once there is an actual fire. If you take the time to go over every possible scenario with them, they are more likely to remember what they need to do when a fire does break out.
After improving your fire safety training, reteach it to your current employees as well. If all your employees are not on the same level of understanding, you’ll see unnecessary conflict when employees try to work together to deal with the situation at hand. You may even want to go over this training yearly, just in case some of the employees have forgotten a few of the tips since the last time they learned it.
Clearly Label Fire Hazards
Regulations also dictate that a company labels fire hazards, so it’s important to remain consistent with it. If labels are peeling or no longer legible, replace them. If the fire hazard is really large with multiple sides, label them on all sides. Even objects that have only a small chance of bursting into flames should have a label. Employees need to be aware of all places in which a fire could start.
Develop a Better Waste Disposal
When busy at work or trying to pick up the pace, it can be easy to get lazy and pile up a bunch of garbage to throw away all at once later. It’s is a great timesaver, but at the same time, it’s a great way to start a fire. If there are any possible fire starters nearby, piled garbage presents easy kindling and can result in a quick-spreading blaze.
To combat this, make sure employees are always disposing of waste properly. If time really is an issue, designate one person to monitor and dispose of garbage. If that’s also not a possibility, invest in more waste disposal sites. Even if you mean the smaller ones for only short-term dumping, they will help keep everyone safer from the chance of a fire.
Reduce Amount of Combustible Materials
Handle all combustible materials and liquids not related to waste in a similar way. Don’t leave them out in the open, next to heat sources, or near known fire starters. Even if you’re using the material at the moment, store any excess should in a fireproof container. Leaving these materials lying around is just asking for a disaster to happen.
Remove Unsafe Electrical Equipment
Electrical fires can be one of the most challenging types to deal with since fire’s number one enemy, water, doesn’t alleviate the situation. That’s why it’s vital to avoid these fires at all costs. Decaying or fraying wires are some of the most common culprits. From a cost standpoint, it can be easy to tell employees to keep using an electric tool with exposed wires if it is still working. However, in the long run, it could end up costing you thousands of dollars in damage, depending on what the fire damages and who it hurts.
The other major electrical problem to avoid is connecting multiple power strips together or plugging too many cords into the same outlet. Either of these can create a power surge that will cause sparks to fly everywhere, which could potentially start a fire, depending on where they land.
Use More Flame-Resistant Materials
The fewer areas a flame can take hold of, the less likely it is that a fire will start in the first place. As such, it’s a good idea to invest in flame-resistant materials. Understandably, they cost more than standard materials, but the amount of money they could save you in the long run could be astronomical. Using flame-resistant tarps, coverings, and sheets will drastically reduce the number of areas where fire could spread.
There are many ways to protect your employees with flame-resistant clothing as well. Many of your workers probably already have their own fireproof clothes if they work around it regularly. Still, if you, as an employer, want to make sure everyone is as safe as they possibly can be, you could require them to wear company coveralls. If that is an idea that interests you, be sure to peruse our list of fire-retardant coveralls. We even offer B2B discounts if you want to buy in bulk or embroider your logo onto them.
Install More Fire Protections
All jobsites legally need safeties in place to stop a fire from spreading, but it never hurts to have more. Installing more water sprinklers and storing more fire extinguishers around the building are both great ways to cover more areas. The more extensive the coverage, the less likely the fire will spread and become an uncontrollable disaster.
Create Designated Smoking Areas
We are finally at the end of our top jobsite fire prevention tips list, but this last one is just as important as the ones prior to it. Many states already don’t allow smoking inside of public businesses, but if you live in a state that does allow it or your jobsite is outdoors, create multiple designated smoking areas that are far away from any sort of fire hazard. It’s impossible to make sure that all employees properly snub out their cigarettes; however, if you give them proper cigarette waste bins and keep them away from dangerous areas, they are less likely to cause a fire accidentally.