Workplace Fire Hazards
Most Americans spend at least 40 hours a week working in an office, but for many, the thought of staying safe during work is not top of mind. The National Fire Protection Association estimates that between 2007-2011, there were 3,340 reported fires in U.S. office properties. There are a variety of workplace fire hazards, some obvious and some subtle. Make sure that you and your coworkers are aware of any potential threats.
Invest in the Best Smoke and Fire Alarms
Look around your work space and make sure that there are smoke alarms that are both properly installed and functional. Browse the First Alert website to see what smoke alarms are best for your workplace needs First Alert produces a variety of products that fit the needs of your specific office space, such as this hardwired ionization smoke alarm with battery backup.
Interconnected smoke alarms are also a great option for larger workplaces, because if one alarm goes off in one area of the building, all alarms in the building will sound. For example, this interconnected smoke alarm with a hardwire adapter included. Plus, it comes with an integrated battery backup that provides you with detection even during power outages.
Make sure to reference the building codes and legislation in your state to ensure your work place is properly protected.
Common Workplace Fire Hazards
Dust buildup can be dangerous in the workplace. Plastic and metal surfaces are the perfect place for dust to accumulate. If you notice your office is dusty, suggest a fan to increase ventilation. Also ensure that any machinery that heats up is kept free of grease and dust to avoid a fire starting.
Waste and combustible materials such as paper and cardboard tend to build up in many workplaces. Empty boxes waiting to be thrown out can cause escape route blockages or they can be a fire hazard itself.
Finally, overloading power sockets is a common fire hazard that is often overlooked. Make sure that power strips are not overloaded because they could overheat. The total number of watts across the whole socket should not exceed 3,000. (source?)
Knowledge is Power
When it comes to fire safety in the workplace, knowledge and preparation is key to your safety. Shop on the First Alert for smoke alarms that meet your needs and check out the Safety Corner if you have more questions!