Here are some tips to help make your workplace safer:
- familiarize youself with your workplace's fire safety plan and evacuation procedure--all employees should know that plan and be required to drill regularly
- know the location of two exits closest to your work area
- keep exits, stairways, and halls clear
- minimize clutter, particularly combustibles such as empty cardboard boxes
- keep flammable liquid storage to a minimum and store only in approved containers away from heat sources
- make provisions for evacuating employees with disabilities by assigning a partner to assist them
- know the location of the nearest fire alarm pull station and how to use it
- always turn off or unplug appliances at the end of each day.
- make sure suitable fire extinguishers are placed in accessible areas throught the building and that all workers know how to use them
- check and replace any electrical cords that have cracked insulation or broken connectors
- never overload outlets or extension cords
- never run extension cords across doorways or under rugs
- keep all appliances a safe distance from combustible materials.
- use only UL Listed tools and appliances
- leave enough space for the circulation of air around heaters and other equipment such as computer terminals and copy machines
- smoke only in areas allowed
What to Do in An Emergency
- go to the nearest exit and close all doors behind you
- never fight a fire if the fire is large or spreading quickly
- if you encounter smoke, consider taking an alternate stairwell/exit; heat and smoke rise leaving cleaner air near the floor; crawl low under smoke
- call 911 immediately regardless of the size of the fire
- once outside, do not re-enter building until fire fighter personnel tell you it's OK
For more information, visit the "Emergency Preparedness and Response" section of the OSHA website.