Does Your Place of Work Have a Fire Escape Plan?

Does Your Place of Work Have a Fire-Escape Plan?

In 2013, 3.4% of all fatal occupational deaths were caused by fire or explosion according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While it’s common knowledge that every homeowner should have a fire escape plan, most people don’t realize how important an escape plan is for the workplace.

A clear fire escape plan can be the difference between life and death during an office emergency. It is worth talking with coworkers and management about the office’s fire escape plan, because a little bit of knowledge and preparation can make all the difference. Here’s what you need to know about an emergency escape plan at the office.

What’s Your Exit Route?

A safe exit route is the most important aspect of your fire escape plan. It’s important to choose an exit route that is unlikely to be blocked in the case of an emergency. Exit routes consists of three parts according to OSHA, or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

(1) You’ll need access to an exit that is a clear path from where you work to the exit. (2) The route should be separate from other areas and  safely allow travel. (3) The route should lead outside or to a public area away from danger.

Usually, each office building should have at least two exit routes that everyone is familiar with in case of emergency. Depending on the number of people in your workplace, one route may suffice.

Create an Exit Route

Planning ahead goes a long way. If you work on the second or third story of a building, consider purchasing a fire escape ladder. A fire escape ladder is an affordable option that can be kept nearby and used in the event of an emergency. This additional option to get out of the building can save precious time by providing an additional exit route.

Tips in the Event of a Fire 

In case there is a fire, remember that the safest place to be is close to the ground because hot air  and smoke rises. During a fire, place the back of your hand on doors before opening them, and if the door is hot, look for another route.

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