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  1. The Business Owner’s Checklist for Commercial Fire Safety in 2019

    December 4, 2018 by Total Fire and Safety

     

    A brand new year is a great time for businesses to evaluate what they can improve upon, even in terms of their commercial fire safety.  No business is completely immune to accidental fires and having the right equipment in place year round can prevent potential devastation.

    According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), more than 3,300 fires break out in office buildings across the U.S each year.  The NFPA reports that a number of people are killed or injured with an estimated $112 million in property damage.

    If you’re a business set on achieving your 2019 goal of reaching NFPA compliance, take a look at checklist of equipment you need below for commercial fire safety. Anything missing? Call Total Fire & Safety. We can help!

    ____    Alarms

    • Fire and smoke alarms are the first line of defense and should be regularly inspected and in working order.
    • Consider wireless fire alarm monitoring, which is more efficient for many businesses.
    • Have a plan of action for occupants should the alarm sound.

    ____     Extinguishers and Suppression Systems

    • Conduct tests regularly to ensure function and pressure when activated.
    • Schedule routine maintenance of equipment.
    • Store extinguishers in open areas for easy access.

    ____     Emergency Lighting

    • Effective emergency lighting throughout the building will help occupants to safety in an emergency.
    • Schedule regular maintenance and inspections.

    Equipment is essential and necessary to prevent major damage but people are too! Whether it’s putting out a fire or tending to the injured, what good is the equipment if you don’t have employees able to use it?

    ____    First Aid

    ____    Training Courses

    • A comprehensive fire equipment training course on the use of fire equipment and first aid can place confidence in employees and keep everyone safe.
    • Training employees reduces the chance of small fires starting and spreading.

    You could have all the equipment ready and employees trained to use it but they need something else.

    ____   Emergency Preparedness Plan

    • Remind employees to REACT-(remove from danger, ensure doors/windows are closed, activate alarm, call 911, treat as dangerous.)
    • Conduct fire drills.
    • Schedule inspections of all fire equipment.
    • Have employees trained on firefighting equipment.

    Making sure you have commercial fire safety in place can seem a daunting task but the pros at Total Fire and Safety are here to simplify it.  TFS covers everything including inspection, maintenance, training, and keeping your building up to code so you are well protected in the event of an unforeseen fire. Give us a call today at 630-960-5060.


  2. Danger on the Job: Keeping the Office Kitchen Safe

    November 5, 2018 by Total Fire and Safety

    Next to the everyday hustle and bustle of the average office, office kitchen fire safety is a secondary concern. However, the National Fire Protection Agency (NFPA) reports that just over one-fifth of office fires begin in the kitchen or cooking area.  Twenty-nine percent are started by cooking equipment, the leading cause of fires in the office.  Although these fires started small, they caused major structure damage.

    With the holidays on the way and more employee parties sure to take place, the office kitchen will be used more than ever.  How can you prevent a fire from happening? How do you keep your employees safe and well fed at the same time?  Here are four important safety tips to help you get started:

    1. Replace worn or frayed power cords.
    Inspect power cords on the kitchen appliances. Are the wires exposed?  If so, the cord can short out and cause a fire.  Encourage your employees to keep an eye out for damaged cords.  Be sure to replace them as soon as they are found.  This one simple act will keep the office safe.

    2. Watch food as it cooks.
    It easy to become distracted in the office, whether its fellow coworkers gossiping or doing too many things at once. You wouldn’t leave food unattended at home and the office should not be any different.  To ensure food cooks properly, emphasize that employees must stay near appliances as they cook or heat food/beverage.  Employees using the kitchen also need to watch for signs of smoke or burning.  Doing so will ensure the safety of the entire building.

    3. Regularly clean appliances.
    We’ve all been there. We stick a (insert food item) in the microwave, oven, toaster, etc., and it explodes or leaves spillage behind.  However, we avoid cleaning, commonly thinking someone else will do it.  Spills and baked-in foods left behind can cause a fire. Cleaning kitchen equipment after use will prevent grease from accumulating which prevents combustion. These hazards can be avoided easily so remind employees to wipe up spills, food particles left behind, etc.

    4. Have employees trained to use a fire extinguisher.
    No matter how proactive you and your employees are, accidents still happen.  Having staff trained to use fire fighting equipment could mean the difference between a catastrophe or a minor incident.  Total Fire and Safety can train you and your employees to use a fire extinguisher, first aid equipment, and other lifesaving safety measures.

    With most office fires starting in the kitchen, it is important to educate employees on office kitchen fire safety.  Total Fire and Safety (TFS) offers a complete fire training program to educate employees on the proper techniques of fighting a fire.  Not only can your employees use these practices in the office, they can also apply them in their home.  Keep you, your staff, and your workplace fire safe. Give TFS a call today at 630-960-5060.


  3. Do You Know What Type of Fire Extinguisher Your Business Needs?

    June 17, 2015 by Total Fire and Safety

    All fires and fire extinguishers are not created equal. It is important, especially in a commercial setting, that a business has the right kind of fire extinguishers available and ready to go for the most probable fires.  Fires are classified five ways (see chart below). While a restaurant may be most concerned with Type K fires, a manufacturing plant may be concerned with B or D.

    According to the NFPA, the materials which ignite the most industrial fires are flammable liquids and gases, and electrical wire or insulation. These materials are common in industrial settings, so be sure to follow all fire safety recommendations, and know what kind of fire extinguishers are best to have on hand in the workplace.

    Here is a chart that explains which type of fire extinguishers work for each type of fire. Of these fires, only one (type A) can be extinguished with water. The rest require special ingredients that cut off oxygen in different ways, therefore, it’s important to have the right kind of extinguisher on hand.

    Once you have the correct extinguisher in place, it’s also important to make sure that you have regularly scheduled fire extinguisher inspections and that your employees have correct fire extinguisher training. Total Fire and Safety offers fire extinguishers for every type of fire. If you have any questions about the type of extinguisher you should have onsite, or current extinguisher maintenance issues, please feel free to contact us at 630.960.5060


  4. Four Telltale Signs You Should Update Your Commercial Fire Protection

    August 19, 2014 by Total Fire and Safety

    update-fire-systemYour commercial fire protection systems should be a “set it and forget it” situation, right? Perhaps, but just like everything, fire systems age too. By updating the system you have, you may be able to save considerable time and money, thanks to advances in the latest life safety technologies. So how do you know when it’s time to update your commercial fire protection?  Here are the main telltale signs:

    Overall age of the system. The industry has made great strides in fire prevention technology in the past decade. The industry continually makes equipment more efficient and reliable, so if it has been a while since you upgraded, chances are you’re missing something.

    Changes in your business or areas of your facility. Have you had any changes that would affect the fire code in a particular area of your facility?  For example if you have relocated your flammables to a different area of the building, you may need additional protection, such as additional fire extinguishers or alarm monitoring to remain compliant with fire code. A fire protection professional can help you make the necessary adjustments.

    Too many service calls.  Have you noticed you are calling more often for system malfunctions? Does it seem like you are constantly scheduling a service call from your fire protection service? Are service calls becoming more routine? Are the bills from your fire protection service inflating because of excessive service calls? These are signs that your older system needs an upgrade to function properly.  As an added bonus, you will see a reduction in your service calls and maintenance fees!

    And the most important reason for upgrading your system…

    You are paying too much for your monitoring services.  Many companies aren’t aware of how much they are actually paying their service company to monitor their fire safety every month. It’s possible a simple, inexpensive upgrade can result in a remarkable savings over time. For example, many companies are switching to wireless fire alarm monitoring systems, which allows them to cut their dual landlines and save 70% on their alarm monitoring services each month.

    If you have an older building, or if you are wondering if an upgrade can save your business money each month, please call Total Fire and Safety at 630-960-5060 for a FREE evaluation of your current commercial fire protection service.


  5. Fire Equipment Training

    May 11, 2013 by Total Fire and Safety

    Effective Training

    We can simulate A, B and C class fires at four difficulty levels and have the capability of grading trainees on their performance. Hundreds of trainees can be trained in a single day without weather restrictions, EPA environmental issues or the mess of using conventional training methods.

    Safe Atmosphere

    Total Fire & Safety Inc. incorporates the latest technology, utilizing digital flames with laser or water training extinguishers.

    Program Advantages

    • Makes training to OSHA requirements safe and easy
    • Allows training to take place entirely indoors: in the conference room, hallways, or in the actual work environment where the emergency would potentially take place
    • Has the ability to grade users, making it easy to monitor improvement and proficiency
    • No toxic waste or extinguisher residue left behind after training is complete
    • A burn permit is not required while eliminating the hazards associated with conventional fire extinguisher training.