Evacuation in the event of a fire can be a tricky situation to manage. You may have a diverse workforce with differing ranges of mobility. Your workplace may have an unusual layout or be part of a shared premise. Your staff may not be confident in their actions in the event of a fire. In any case it is important to make sure that any action taken is decisive and carried out safely.
Here at Robert Richards Associates we are happy to help with some top tips in ensuring the safety of the people in your building in the event of a fire or other emergency.
Review Your Evacuation Plans
Look at your existing evacuation plan to ensure it is relevant and up to date. Any renovations or alterations to the building may affect escape routes or the number of people using the route. Any new or existing staff who present a mobility or other issue pertaining to evacuation may need a separate Personal Emergency Evacuation Plan (PEEP).
If your building has acquired any new staff, residents or students over the course of the past year, it is important to double-check that Personalised Evacuation Emergency Plans (PEEPs) have been developed for those who require them. This document outlines the specific type of assistance a mobility-restricted person requires in the event of an evacuation.
Provide Refresher Training
All staff should be aware of their actions in the event of a fire. Action notices should be displayed prominently. These instruct people of their initial actions and in the chosen assembly point outside the building. Designated people should be trained to use evacuation equipment in the event of an emergency, so that they can effectively help anyone with mobility issues e.g. Evac Chairs.
Even if staff have received training in recent years, refresher training is a useful undertaking, as it keeps this crucial information fresh in the minds of people who are charged with specific duties. The refresher training will also serve to ensure that any new staff members who have been hired since the last training session will also learn about procedures and evacuation equipment.
Carry Out A Fire Drill
Keep the people in your building updated with evacuation measures by carrying out a fire drill at six monthly intervals. It will also provide you with a chance to review your current evacuation plans and decide if there is anything that needs improvement.
If you need any guidance on evacuation procedures or have any questions at all about the safety and health of your staff or those you are responsible for, please contact us.