Fire safety training for your company

It is imperative to ensure that fire extinguishers are readily available, and that staff are familiar with using them.

As a business owner, you will be well aware that operating a business entails many complex and varied responsibilities. At the top of this list, is ensuring the health and safety of your employees. The New Zealand government has consistently introduced health and safety provisions as legislative requirements designed to ensure the safety of employees in all occupations. But it’s not all about legislation.

If your staff kitchen caught fire while you were reading this, would your staff know what to do? Would they feel confident choosing the correct equipment for the fire in front of them?

While there is significant awareness about installing photoelectric smoke alarms in every room of your house, and about the dangers of house fires, it’s less likely that many of us have considered the possibility or impact of a workplace accident or fire.
This post explores why you should invest in some specialised fire safety training for your company.

What is fire safety training?

Rather than jumping straight into the ‘why’s?’, let’s take a look at what the actual purpose of fire safety training is. There are a few reasons why this type of training is vital for your team and their safety. Firstly, to make your employees aware of the potential for a workplace fire or accident. If they are able to spot hazards before the worst happens, they can eliminate a risk before it becomes an emergency situation. Secondly, and perhaps more importantly, providing training and demonstrations help your staff feel confident and competent to react in a difficult or unexpected situation.

Why do my staff need training?

Fires can start suddenly, therefore the effectiveness and swiftness of the initial remedial response from properly trained employees will have a large influence on the quality of the outcome. Obviously, your employees need appropriate specialised training to ensure they are able to safely evacuate the premises, or in the event of a smaller incident, that they can manage a localised fire effectively. Some employees may be intimidated by handling fire equipment, while others may simply benefit from some instruction relating to how and in what circumstances fire extinguishers and fire blankets should be used. Similarly, fire training includes instructing employees on how fire spreads, and any aggravating factors which could escalate the situation, so that their efforts to extinguish the fire, and evacuate the building, are made in the context of that knowledge. It is imperative to ensure that fire extinguishers are readily available, and that staff are familiar with using them. Research has indicated that without training, many people don’t automatically know how to use fire blankets, which if used correctly, are a very useful tool to prevent the spread of fire.

The day-to-day is the most important part

Fire training is only the first step in empowering your staff in emergency situations. Reinforcement is vital. Though fire drills can sometimes be considered mundane and unnecessary, they are actually a very effective tool which can be used to highlight any areas of concern or deficiencies in a fire response plan. This information can then be utilised to make adjustments and to convey reassurance about employee safety to your valued employees. It also seeks to reinforce the training you invested in and see how it works in practice.

Give your staff the confidence to act

Businesses that make fire training for employees a priority, are signalling to their employees that the company values their safety. It ensures that all employees have the skills, the confidence and the training to respond appropriately in the event of a workplace fire. As well as the practical objectives of providing fire safety training to your employees such as the ability to evacuate the building safely, and in certain circumstances, to reduce property damage, one of the greatest advantages of providing fire training is to boost employee morale and confidence. Empower your staff today.

Strategic Partners