• Alarm detection and Fire/Smoke detection.
• Fire doors and fire hydrants.
• Fire extinguishers.
• Sprinkler systems.
• Fire hose reels and portable fire extinguishers.
• Emergency lightning.
• Safety exit signs.
• Comprehensive evacuation plan.
However, despite having all the measures in place, “the responsible person” can’t take the full weight when it comes to fire emergency and safety in the workplace, which is why staff training is equally important. All the personnel should be given knowledge about the law and physics of fire, it’s various classes and types of fire extinguishers, and how to use them so in the case of emergency, even the staff can do their best to safe themselves and the workplace from being burned down all together.
2. There is a famous saying, prevention is better than the cure. This applies here too. Providing your staff the detailed information and science behind the causes of fire will enable them to understand more accurately and apply techniques to put it off accordingly. A simple way to understand this is through the fire triangle. Three elements are required for a fire to start: heat, oxygen, and fuel. The triangle shows you can combat the fire blaze by removing one of the three elements.
Heat is required mainly for ignition which can be removed by cold water in most cases. Fuel can be reduced and eliminated by starving the fire of its combustible elements such as flammable liquids, solids, and gases, and oxygen that feeds the fire can be smothered by a fire blanket.
3. Fire, as important and as destructive it may be, is classified under various classes, determined by the materials involved in the ignition and fire blaze. There are 5 classes of fire. Class A comprises solid materials such as plastics, paper, wood, fabrics, and related items. Class B comprises of flammable liquids such as solvents, paint, petrol, and oil. Class C has flammable gases such as propane, methane, butane. Class D comprises flammable metals such as potassium, aluminium, titanium, etc and lastly Class F. This is ignited by means of cooking oils and fats.
Thus, each class is relevant to different types of industries and it is important to further research about the science of fire classes according to your premises for better understanding. Thus, a simple model to help the staff understand the chemical reaction involved to ignite a fire will make it easier for them to react accordingly. However, an important point to note here is that in different countries like Australia and the U.S. denote fire classes differently such as Class F is also referred to as Class K in some countries. So when hiring people from multiple countries or moving your facility to other countries, bear this in mind while providing training to the staff.
4. After training the staff the basics of fire, it is now time to explain fire safety equipment and the most useful and common among them are fire extinguishers. It is among the most important pieces of equipment that act as your primary defense. Training pertaining to fire extinguisher types and how to use them is a requirement for fire marshals at a minimum but it would be best if your whole staff knows it, after all, this knowledge can come in handy to anyone at any time. An important point to note here is that fire extinguishers can be used by staff on small, controllable fires, if the fire gets uncontrollable and spreads out to a huge area, evacuating the place immediately is the only wise option and priority.
As the fire is classified into various categories, so is the fire extinguishers. The materials contained in each fire extinguisher depending on the type of fire which has to be put off, thus, using appropriate extinguisher will help in successfully combating the fire blaze. The types of extinguisher are identified through a colored band around its face.
• Water extinguisher is of red color, used for putting off fire derived from solids known as Class A fire.
• Carbon Dioxide extinguisher is of black color, used for flammable liquids and electrical fire also known as Class B fires.
• Powder extinguisher is of blue color, used for flammable liquid, chemicals, and electric fires known as Class C and Class F fires.
• Wet chemical extinguisher is of yellow color, used for cooking oil a fats based fire ignition.
Now the question is, how to use a fire extinguisher? The answer and procedure both are simple. The procedure is called a PASS method.
Step 1: Pull the pin located at the end of the extinguisher.
Step 2: Aim the nozzle directly to the base of the fire, to remove the source from the base.
Step 3: Squeeze the operating level.
Step 4: Sweep the nozzle back and forth around the base of the blaze of the fire, make sure to keep a safe distance and gradually move towards it as the fire starts to subside.