If you have a business, you know the importance of a fire alarm system. Of course it is a must to meet local, state, and federal requirements; but more than that,it protects the lives of your employees, customers, and the business itself. However, there are some things even the best monitored commercial fire alarm system can not do– and that is get you out. When the alarm sounds, you must have a way for everyone to get out quickly and orderly. To accomplish this you need an established safety plan that everyone in the company knows and has practiced regularly.

Here is how to develop a plan that will protect the lives of your employees and customers.

Evaluate and Eliminate Hazards

Every business has its own unique issues to consider concerning the development of a fire safety plan. The first step is to evaluate the structure and the working of the business for any hazards that could be eliminated. Look for practices that could be improved as well as other potential fire hazards, such as neglected equipment, electrical appliances left on, debris, chemicals and other sources of possible ignition.

Have the Right Equipment Installed Properly

Early detection is key to getting out quickly and safely, which makes early detection and warning important. Be sure your system is installed by a knowledgeable professional for maximum effectiveness of the system.

Develop an Escape Plan

Map out the structure of your business and and develop an escape plan with contingencies based on where the fire is located, regular location of occupants and visitors, and the floorplan.

Establish Crisis Leaders

As part of your escape plan, establish crisis leaders who can guide others in the event of a fire or other emergency. Provide adequate training about your fire escape plan and how to handle crisis.

Have Frequent Drills

Like the old adage, “practice makes perfect”. Once a fire erupts, you have an average of just two short minutes to escape safely. Most people think they have much longer as it seems to take longer for fire to consume a structure. However, in the vast majority of fire related deaths, it is smoke inhalation, not flame, that is the cause of death. And smoke fills a structure very quickly. Practice your escape plan and be sure that everyone can get out in under two minutes.

Be sure your business has the right fire protection. Develop a fire safety plan that not only includes a professionally installed and monitored commercial fire system but a comprehensive plan for escape. Call Knight Security today to schedule your annual confidence testing.

Keith Maley
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