When a fire breaks out, it will not take long for the flames to cause significant damage to your property ― be it a home or business. Fires will devour any items and materials in their way. They will also produce smoke and soot, which will cause additional damage.
In an office, it is especially important to practice fire safety to protect all of the employees, materials, tools, and products that occupy the space. A fire can force an office to temporarily close, preventing staff from working and earning money they need while also limiting the business’s ability to provide a product or service.
If office managers and workers learn about office fires and their top causes, everyone will be in a better position to protect themselves and the property from the threat of a fire.
Continue reading to learn more about the top causes of office fires and how to prevent them.
What are the Top Causes of Office Fires?
1. Cooking Appliances and Equipment
Many office fires, like those that occur in homes, start out in the kitchen. From bread burning in the toaster to food warming for too long in the microwave, the kitchen is an area where heat is used to cook and warm food, making it fairly easy for a fire to break out if proper caution is not used. Fires of any kind are never good, but a majority of kitchen fires, fortunately, do not spread very far.
2. Lighting and Electricity Use
Electrical fires may not be as common in the office as kitchen fires. But when it comes to office fires, electrical fires do account for a significant amount of property damage.
Often caused by lighting and wiring issues, electrical fires can occur and cause destruction outside of business hours. In such a case, no one will likely be around which means that the fire will spread and cause serious damage before it is put out. The good thing about this is that people will not be in immediate danger.
3. Heating Systems
Heating systems are essential for creating a comfortable office environment during colder days. But they can only be effective and safe if they are kept in good condition. Otherwise, failing to maintain the heating system can cause a fire to break out.
Nowadays, there are not as many business settings that permit smoking. However, smoking is known to be among the top causes for office fires. This can be due to employees failing to properly put out their cigarettes.
5. Arson and Other Intentional Fires
While unfortunate, there are instances in which fires are intentionally ignited. Some cases can be accidents, while in other cases, individuals purposefully set a property on fire, committing the crime of arson. According to the National Fire Protection Association, these intentional fires result in the most property damage.
How Can Office Fires Be Prevented?
1. Create and Review the Office Fire Safety Plan
When everyone in your office understands how to protect the property from a fire, the chances of office fires are minimized. Knowing this, office managers must create and implement an office fire safety plan.
Once a plan is in place, distribute copies to employees. Have meetings so the whole staff can regularly review the plan, bring up any questions, and revise it as needed. This will help employees feel ready in case there is an emergency. The last thing office managers want is for their employees to be unprepared in the event of a fire.
2. Get Proper Fire Extinguishers
If you address a fire soon enough, you can minimize the damage. With fire extinguishers readily available throughout the office, employees can act quickly enough to stop the flames. As such, your staff should also be taught and trained on how to properly use a fire extinguisher.
However, there are various types of fire extinguishers available and not all of them are equipped to handle every type of fire, so you need to make sure you install the correct ones. For example, if there is an electrical fire in the office, you need to use a class C fire extinguisher, as it is designed for such fires. Do your research before purchasing any fire extinguishers.
Fire Damage Restoration Services
With the aforementioned information, employees can be better prepared in the event that an office fire breaks out. However, accidents happen, and there are some instances where office fires occur outside of business hours. Regardless, if your office is the site of a recent fire, seek professional fire damage restoration help right away.
ServiceMaster provides professional fire damage restoration services in Lincoln, NE. If your office space was the site of a fire, we can help. We employ well-trained professional technicians who are properly equipped to clean and restore your office of fire damage, but you need to act quickly.
The damage that smoke, soot, and other corrosive byproducts cause can become permanent if they are not addressed in a timely manner. Don’t hesitate to give us a call for emergency fire restoration services, and we will work efficiently to restore your office.