No matter which type of commercial building you work in, fire emergency procedures, including fire drills, are a vital part of your workplace fire safety plan. Along with fire alarms, fire extinguishers and fire safety signs, drills and other emergency procedures are an indirect, but equally significant, form of fire protection. They serve to protect everyone who works in your building from the potential consequences of fire.
A fire drill can often be viewed as an inconvenience, disrupting the working day.
But fire drills are important as they create a situation which replicates what would happen should a real fire occur. Fire drills need to be as simple, effective and efficient as possible and every employee needs to be familiar with the emergency evacuation plan and are confident they can get out of the building quickly and safely.
A fire drill is the ideal opportunity to test the effectiveness of your emergency plans and whether there are any issues which need to be addressed. In the long run, a robust and effective fire drill can save lives in real-case scenario.
Fire safety legislation stipulates that all commercial buildings should have in place procedures for serious and imminent danger along with suitable means of escape. To carry out these procedures, the responsible person or duty holder must appoint a sufficient number of competent people to help with the evacuation of the building.
Employers have a duty of care to ensure that people in the building are aware of the fire evacuation procedures, including location of fire exits and assembly points. They also need to identify anyone who may need additional support or help to leave the building with specific plans in place to support this.
Fire exits and emergency routes must be properly marked with signs and, where necessary, adequate emergency escape lighting.
It’s also important to ensure that there are a sufficient numbers of escape routes to enable people to reach a place of safety.
Assembly points outside the building should also be indicated clearly.
At Hartson Fire, in addition to fire safety equipment and signage, we can also help commercial building owners with other services including fire risk assessments which also cover emergency plans and procedures.
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