The outbreak of a fire is something that can happen almost anywhere and at any time. Fires can occur for any number of reasons, either through a natural event such as a bushfire, faulty wiring creating a spark, flammable materials not stored correctly, discarded cigarette butts, candles, heating appliances and many other causes.
Commercial and industrial sites often have numerous hazards, many of which have the potential to kickstart a fire on the site. A combination of a busy work environment, the use of flammable materials and chemicals, machinery, complex electronic systems, industrial kitchens, climate control equipment, vehicles and more can ultimately create a volatile scenario that could result in a fire breaking out.
Every industrial operation should be prepared in the event of a fire. Hopefully one never occurs but if it does, you need to be ready. For starters, everyone on the site should be trained in fire safety. The site should also have enough fire suppressant equipment, such as extinguishers, fire sprinkler systems, fire axes, hoses, a fire alarm and, of course, an evacuation plan.
What you also need to have is an emergency response team on hand who will act quickly in the face of a fire emergency, a team of first responders. What is a fire emergency response team and what do they do? Read on to learn more.
Emergency response teams are the first response to an emergency, in this case, a fire. An industrial first response service might also respond to emergencies such as flooding, toxic hazards, workplace accidents, confined spaces emergencies and emergencies related to heights.
Now, even if everyone on your industrial site has been trained in general fire safety and knows how to use a fire extinguisher, they are not trained as a fire emergency response team, or as first responders. When a fire breaks out, the wisest course of action for employees and anyone else on the site is to evacuate to a safe zone if possible.
In the unfortunate event that a fire does break out on your industrial site, you should alert your chosen fire emergency response team. As soon as the team is aware of the fire, they will facilitate a rapid and effective response. Not only will a first response service act very quickly, but their actions could also potentially save lives, equipment and structures.
Now that you have a clearer picture of what a fire emergency response team is, let’s go over some of the benefits that a first response service provides for industrial sites.
Ideally, you’ll never need to call in your emergency response team. The best case scenario is that a fire or any other emergency never eventuated. However, knowing that you have a team of emergency responders on hand will give you a lot of peace of mind. A fire could occur at any time but it’s comforting to know that help is close by
Some industrial sites have emergency responders on-site, just in case a scenario unfolds and they need to be called into service. An on-site fire emergency response team will mean they spring into action instantaneously and get a handle on the emergency immediately. There is no downtime due to travelling to the site and they are able to control the situation before the government emergency services arrive.
When your team of emergency responders is on-site can save lives in the event of a fire breaking out. A trained team of professionals not only acts fast, but they know what to do and when to do it without hesitation. This knowledge, experience and speed combined can literally save lives, which is the number one priority in the case of any emergency, but especially a fire.
When the fire emergency response team springs quickly into action, not only will valuable lives be saved, but equipment, property and any structures will likely suffer less damage than if you didn’t have a response team on standby. While secondary to saving lives, saving property is also very important.
Another important duty first responders can effect is helping organise a rapid evacuation when a fire breaks out. Not only will this get everyone out of harm’s way faster, but it will also allow the team to focus on other tasks, or to rescue anyone unable to evacuate.
A fire emergency response team will also coordinate with other emergency services, such as firefighters, police and ambulance. With all emergency response teams working together cohesively, the situation is likely to be wrestled under control far more readily.
Your emergency response team can regularly evaluate and monitor your industrial site to ensure fire hazards are kept to a minimum and that everyone on-site is conducting themselves and their duties in a fire-safe manner. Prevention also comes under the umbrella of risk management.
Having an emergency response team helps to build trust, both in your workforce and the community in general. It also shows you are a responsible organisation that cares about your workforce, the general public and the local community. When people trust your brand, this also helps to generate more business and profits. Reducing or eradicating the likelihood of emergencies also gives the company’s bottom line a boost, as well as maintaining a good safety record.
For added safety and even more peace of mind, having a fire emergency plan in place is not only highly recommended, but is essential and a legal requirement. SSTC will work with you to come up with a plan in the event of a fire or any other number of industrial emergencies.
We develop plans that are site-specific, as there is no one-size fits all approach to fire safety that will work. Every site is different so every plan needs to be tailored to that site. We take into consideration the type of work that’s being carried out in the workplace, the type of potential hazards, location and size of the area, the number of workers and so on. The plan will also include emergency procedures should a fire break out, testing of those emergency procedures, training, information and instructing workers on what to do to implement those emergency procedures.
SSTC focuses on 4 key elements when formulating emergency plans. These are:
Our certified and experienced team also conducts risk assessments and Safe Work Method Statements.
As part of our comprehensive range of services at SSTC, we offer a fire-first response service for your safety and peace of mind. Our team has over 25 years of combined experience and everyone on the team is highly trained and fully certified.
Talk to SSTC first about implementing a fire emergency response team for your industrial site. It can not only save lives, but also reduce damage to valuable property. Most importantly, you’ll greatly reduce the risk of a fire starting in the first place. Get in contact with SSTC today and discover just what we can do for you.