Construction sites and workshops are at high risk of fire. This means that fire safety should be an upmost priority for those within the construction industry.
To help you implement the necessary fire safety training and emergency procedures, here are some top tips for fire safety in the construction industry.
- Keep all construction sites clear
Waste materials on construction sites, such as packaging, offcuts and wooden pallets can be a great source of fuel for a fire. Though this might be great news when building a bonfire, it is a huge fire risk for anyone in the construction industry.
Therefore, it is important to make sure that you keep construction sites and workshops clear of waste. In order to effectively stop waste materials building up, it is necessary to plan for waste.
- Plan for waste
It is okay to say that you must keep your site clear of waste – but that waste must have somewhere to go! Plan designated areas where waste and rubbish can be disposed, such as bins, skips and other waste containers. These are best placed away from the main site itself, as it stops a potential fire spreading.
- Conduct a risk assessment
Conducting a risk assessment is a part of your legal requirement as a ‘responsible person’, as stated in The Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 Article 9.
This states that the “responsible person must make a suitable and sufficient assessment of the risks to which relevant persons are exposed for the purpose of identifying the general fire precautions he needs to take to comply with the requirements and prohibitions imposed on hum by or under this Order.”
- Check all electrics are safe
Electrics must only be installed by a trained professional electrician and should be regularly checked and maintained. Trailing cables can be easily damaged during construction work which could pose an electrical fire risk.
- Observe a no smoking policy
A discarded cigarette butt is a simple, unintentional way that fires can get started by employees of any industry. Smoking should not be allowed on site, confined to a designated smoking area which is less at risk of starting a fire.
- Provide fire extinguishers
Though this is not necessarily a way to prevent a fire from starting, it is necessary to make sure that you have the means to control the blaze in the event that something catches alight.
- Make sure all fire alarms are working and maintained
Whether you are working on an open site or in someone else’s property, it is crucial to make sure that all fire alarms are working and maintained. Professional fire alarm installers can check over your system on a regular basis, ensuring that you will be warned of a fire taking place.
- Reduce potential ignition and fuel sources
And finally, reduce ignition sources and potential fuel sources, in line with Government guidance. You can read more about this in their comprehensive ‘fire safety in construction’ handbook.
There you have it – 8 simple top tips to help people in the construction industry prevent, control, and put out a fire safely. To read more on topics like this, check out the blog category.
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