Insights and resources for employers and professionals.

It’s Fire Safety Month!

Did you know? Every year there are approximately 6,000 fires in US businesses!

According to The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) it is estimated that U.S. fire departments responded to an average of 3,340 fires in office buildings each year. These fires caused an annual average of four deaths, 44 fire injuries, and $112 million in direct property damage.

Less than one-third of the fires (31%) occurred between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m. More than one in every four office property fires (29%) was caused by cooking equipment. (coffee makers) Fires that were intentionally set (10% of office property fires) caused the largest share of direct property damage (20%)

Equipment and Appliances
  • Leave space for air to circulate around heaters and other heat-producing equipment, such as copy machines, coffeemakers, and computers.

  • Keep appliances away from anything that might catch fire.

  • Do not stack books or papers on top of appliances or computer monitors.

  • Designate an employee to turn off or unplug all appliances (including coffeemakers) at the end of each workday.

  • Keep clutter out of halls, lobbies, alleys, and other public areas.

  • Keep waste paper, empty boxes, dirty rags, cleaning supplies, and other combustibles out of exits, storage areas, and stairways.

  • Replace any cracked, frayed, or damaged electrical cords.

  • Never run extension cords across doorways or where they can be stepped on or pinched or run over by chairs or other furniture.

  • Do not plug extension cords into each other and avoid plugging more than one extension cord into an outlet.

  • Be sure to use an appropriate extension cord for the appliance being used.

  • Follow your building’s security measures and keep unauthorized people out of the building.

  • Keep doors locked outside of normal business hours.

  • Alleys and other areas around your building should be well lit.

  • Cigarettes, matches, and lighters are a major cause of all fires. Smoking at the workplace is only permitted in designated outdoor areas.

  • Do not flick ashes onto floors or into wastebaskets. Use large, non-tip ashtrays, and make sure everything in them is cold before you empty them.

  • Apply the same cautions to visitors and be alert to smoldering cigarette butts on furniture or in wastebaskets.

Following these simple tips can help you remain safe from fire hazards at your workplace!