October is fire prevention month. We invite you to review your fire safety procedures and inspect your premises for proper and appropriate fire safety standards. An inspection of your premises by the fire marshal or other fire professional is always a great way to be sure you are keeping current with safety. It is also important to do a few simple housekeeping items on your own.
- Perform monthly inspections and test all fire detectors. Replace dead batteries, look for proper installation and prohibit tampering of all fire detectors.
- Check all emergency lights. A simple push of a button should tell you if the lights are functional and able to properly illuminate evacuation routes.
- Locate and strategically place a suitable amount of fire extinguishers and other fire suppression systems. Check the inspection tags and maintain all fire extinguishers and fire suppression systems as recommended.
- Develop an evacuation plan for all activities including bible study groups, Sunday school classes, Sunday services, funerals, weddings and other events. Train your staff to respond quickly and appropriately. Establish a safe zone to serve as a meeting area far from the danger of a burning building.
- Hold fire drills for Sunday services, Sunday school, youth group meetings, etc.
- Routinely inspect the exterior and interior of the building for excessive piles of debris, garbage and clutter. A clean and tidy building provides a better work area for the fire department and limits large flammable exposures.
- Develop a prevention plan. Limit and restrict the use of burning candles, space heaters, wood burning fireplaces, etc.
- Invite and welcome fire department inspections. Be ready to comply with recommendations to provide a safe environment.
- Have an emergency contact file prepared and stored in two separate locations. Copies of your insurance policy, policy number, agent’s phone number and carrier emergency claim number are all important to include in the file.