Fire Safety in the Workplace

A fire at work can be terrible for both the owner of the building and the people who work there. When fires destroy places of work, people can lose their jobs and the owner of the business could go out of business. The USFA says that every year in the United States there are 17,000 office and store fires that cause over $800 million in direct property damage.

Steps Employees Should Take to Prevent Workplace Fires

  • Keep anything that can catch fire away from electrical equipment.
  • Get anything in the way of an exit.
  • Make sure windows can be opened and screens can be taken off.
  • Check electrical outlets, cords, and cables for damage or overload.
  • Plan and practice multiple escape routes in case one is blocked.
  • Keep your workspace and equipment clean, dry, and well-ventilated.

Steps Employers Should Take to Prevent Workplace Fires

  • Hold regular emergency and fire drills;
  • Check the condition of fire ladders and escapes;
  • Teach employees about exits, escape routes, and fire protection equipment like fire extinguishers;
  • Post fire escape plans throughout the building;
  • Make sure fire sprinklers and fire alarms are properly installed and working as they should.

What to Do During a Fire

  • Call 911;
  • Use the stairs, never the elevator;
  • Safely leave the building;
  • If you can’t leave the building safely, seal door gaps with jackets or towels, stay at a window, and stay calm.

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