Fire Prevention Week, Oct. 9-15, serves to remind us that fire-safety precautions in the workplace can prevent significant injuries and deaths. According to Injury Facts 2016, businesses lose billions of dollars to fire each year.
No industry is immune to fire, but some require more stringent precautions than others. Here are a few industry-specific materials and processes that can be fire-starters:
- Dust: Sawmills, automobile manufacturers, grain elevators, power plants and even sugar refineries produce powders and dust that can cause massive explosions
- Arc welding: Hazards include accumulation of toxic gases, showers of sparks and drops of molten metal
- Paint and flammable liquids: Often found on construction sites, and in warehouses and industrial plants, flammable liquids, if not stored properly, can be highly combustible
- Portable heaters and electrical devices: Used frequently by outdoor workers – but also found in many offices – portable heaters result in hundreds of fires each year
Bring Safety Home
Home fires caused nearly 3,000 deaths and $7.2 billion in losses, according to Injury Facts 2016.
Smoke alarms dramatically reduce fatalities, but data shows many people don’t pay enough attention to them, according to the National Fire Protection Association. That’s why NFPA has focused on smoke alarms for the past three years during Fire Prevention Week, which will be held thi s year Oct. 9-15. This year’s theme, “Don’t Wait, Check the Date,” is meant to remind families to replace their smoke alarms every 10 years.
A small house fire can rage out of control in minutes. NSC provides the following tips to keep your home safe from fire:
- Install both types of smoke alarms (ionization and photoelectric) and carbon monoxide alarms; change the batteries at least once a year in these devices
- Plan – and practice – an escape route and agree on a meeting place outside of your home; be prepared to assist young children, family members with special needs and pets
- Know two ways out of every room in the home
- Learn how to use your fire extinguisher
- If your clothes catch on fire, stop, drop and roll
- When evacuating, if door handles are hot, pick an alternate route
- Leave your house and call for help; do not go back to help someone else
- Follow these safety tips to keep children safe from fire
This Fire Safety Checklist for homeowners and renters will help ensure your home is as safe as possible.