According to EPS Security, just over 30% of office fires, 50% of hotel and motel fires, and nearly over 60% of restaurant fires are a result of cooking. Given this, it makes sense to use safe cooking practices if you're interested in fire prevention in the workplace. It's surprising how something as simple as cooking can result in considerable damage or even pose a danger to human life. The good news is that the danger can be averted by implementing the following safe cooking practices in the workplace.
Ensure the Availability of Proper Fire Detection Devices
The most effective fire prevention tip you can implement to prevent cooking fires on business premises is to ensure the availability of proper fire detection devices. As a business owner or manager, you may not always have the time or expertise to know which devices can best help you protect your office kitchen. In that case, it's better to work with licensed technicians that can do the installation work for you. The most common and effective fire detection devices you should invest in include kitchen fire suppression systems, fire sprinklers, fire alarms, and fire extinguishers. Having the right fire detection and protection devices can be the most robust defense against kitchen fire hazards.
When you partner with the right provider, you don't have to worry about whether the fire devices have been installed properly. Instead, you can be sure that you have a customized fire protection system in place that you can rely on. In addition, an experienced provider will also ensure that there are technicians available to take care of preventative maintenance work to keep the system in the best working condition. This gives you peace of mind knowing you have all the right fire protection devices to alleviate the situation in worst-case scenarios.
Ensure Proper Housekeeping in the Kitchen
There are many best practices for preventing cooking fires in the workplace, and one of them is to maintain proper housekeeping. That means making sure that all kitchen appliances are always clean. You should always encourage employees to clean after themselves as they cook and to do a deep cleaning of the kitchen regularly. This is necessary because, at any given time, there are many opportunities for appliances to get dirty. The list includes food spills, grease stains, and leftover oil, all of which can add fuel to the fire if one breaks out. Employees should always be alert and make sure they store anything that can catch fire, such as wooden utensils, food packaging, oven mitts, or towels, away from heat sources.
Educate Employees About Cooking-Related Fire Prevention
If you want to reduce the risk of kitchen fires in the workplace when cooking, one of the most important things to do is to create a thriving fire safety culture. This can only be achieved if everyone in the company participates. For instance, do your employees know which safety protocols to observe when making food in the kitchen? It's essential for everyone to have a proactive attitude to prevent the workplace kitchen from creating fire hazards that can spread to the rest of the office. In the event of a fire, important business documents, property, and assets can get destroyed. This, in turn, can affect your operations and your bottom line.
This is not the worst of it because a fire can also put lives in danger. One of the best fire prevention strategies you can implement in order to avoid this danger is to educate employees and ensure they have the necessary training to use fire extinguishers. Employees should always be aware of the risk of cooking fires. This awareness will go a long way towards reducing incidences where an employee starts a fire unintentionally. Employee fire extinguisher training can be quite effective, especially when combined with other fire prevention tips, such as making sure fire extinguishers are strategically placed and in good working order.
Inspect Appliances and Power Cords Regularly
Another fire prevention tip that helps minimize the risk of cooking fires is to inspect electrical appliances in the kitchen on a regular basis. If you want to be proactive with this, it's important to establish a schedule where you proactively check kitchen appliances for any faults or potential issues. For starters, it's good to check that the kitchen appliances in your workplace have not been recalled and that they have been registered. This will help ensure that your kitchen appliances do not contribute to the risk of a cooking fire developing. Otherwise, your kitchen appliances can be at an increased risk for fire hazards if their condition goes unattended for too long.
Besides checking the appliances, you should also pay attention to the power cords. More specifically, make sure the power cords are not frayed or damaged in any way. Otherwise, the cords will be at risk of short-circuiting. Management should assign someone the duty of checking for worn-out, damaged, or frayed power cords. If there are damaged cords, then they should be replaced promptly. Employees should also be advised to limit the use of extension cords. It's better to plug appliances directly into the available outlets as this reduces the risk of electrical failure.
You should also encourage employees to unplug appliances that are not in use. Besides that, it's also up to management to ensure that all electrical outlets are working properly and to replace faulty electrical plugs and wiring. Management should also teach personnel the ways of identifying damaged power cords and how to follow proper maintenance procedures.
How to Deal With a Cooking Fire
Truth be told, although there are many fire prevention tips you can implement to lower the risk of cooking fires, completely eradicating the risk is impossible. If the worst comes to worst, you might find yourself dealing with a cooking fire. In that case, your employees need to know what to do to deal with the situation. If it's a small fire that can easily be contained with a fire extinguisher, then this can be the end of it. Sometimes, it's good to have a cooking lid nearby to smother small grease fires. If it's an oven fire, switch off the appliance and make sure the door is closed.
However, if it's a big fire that can't be contained, the best thing to do is to get out of the kitchen as quickly as possible. Be sure to close the door to prevent the fire from spreading to other areas of the building. The sooner you contact 911 or the fire department, the sooner the fire will be contained.
Fire prevention in the workplace is a critical issue, and one of the ways to ensure fire prevention is by making the kitchen a safer place. In order to minimize the dangers of fire in the workplace, it's essential to be prepared as much as possible. This involves making sure there are fire protection devices installed in the kitchen.
It's good to maintain a proper housekeeping schedule in the kitchen and to inspect electrical appliances and cords frequently. You should also invest time in educating employees about fire prevention in the kitchen and how to deal with a cooking fire in the worst-case scenario. If you would like to learn more about fire prevention tips when cooking, don't hesitate to contact Sirina Fire Protection Corp today.