Ten Helpful Tips to Prepare Your Business for a Fire Inspection

All business owners in the province of Ontario are required to conduct fire inspections in their places of work in order to keep their staff, customers and places of business safe from fire. Here are some crucial pointers that promote proper fire safety maintenance.

Following these ten helpful tips will make the next visit by the fire department a much more pleasant one!

1. Keep your fire extinguisher visible and fully charged. Fire extinguishers should always be clearly visible, easy to access and fully charged in case there’s a fire. Extinguishers must also be serviced annually by a skilled technician, and inspected monthly.

2. Make sure your sprinkler systems are maintained. You’ll also want to confirm that all parts of your sprinkler system are fully operational, that your sprinkler heads are not damaged and that there is at least 450 mm (18”) clearance below the sprinkler heads.

3. Test your smoke alarms every year. Make sure you also change the batteries in the smoke alarms at least once a year (most people do it with the change to Daylight Savings Time).

4. Have your life safety systems inspected each year by CFAA-licensed technicians.  Help this cause by ensuring that no devices connected to the fire alarm system are obstructed.

5. Make sure your exit signage is clearly visible and fully illuminated. As for your exit doors, confirm that the locks are fully functional, that they do not require any special codes to exit and that exit passageways are completely clear.

6. Avoid electrical hazards! Ensure that you don’t overload your circuits and that electrical solutions like power bars or electrical cords are not used simultaneously.

7. Keep your storage rooms bare and organized and your laundry room clean. It’s important that you clean out the lint traps in your laundry machines regularly and that there is no build-up of lint. Regularly check for clothing items that may have fallen behind the machines. Make sure that your mechanical and service rooms are also clean and free of clutter.

8. Ensure that your generator (emergency power) is properly serviced and maintained.

9. Perform flow and flush tests of your piping systems every five years.

10. Make sure you have an up-to-date fire plan stored in the fire safety box for the fire department to access at any time.  Annual inspection reports from previous years should also be kept here.

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