In America, a house catches fire every 86 seconds. For homeowners, a fire can be terrible, but for businesses, a fire has the potential to devastate a location beyond repair and cost owners thousands of dollars in lost revenue and damages. However, you can help safeguard your business by giving all employees the fire extinguisher training so that any potentially devastating fires can be extinguished quickly and safely.
The Four Benefits of Fire Extinguisher Training Courses
- Correct Usage of Fire Extinguishers
A training course for employees can help instruct them in the correct way to use fire extinguishers. This hands-on training can be crucial should a fire ever break out at your place of business. While you can find many instructional guides online, learning from a professional and going through the motions yourself helps better prepare you for using a fire extinguisher in an emergency situation. This training can also help employees understand the different types of fire extinguishers, as well as the different types of fires they should be used to extinguish. All of this training can help better prepare everyone and potentially save your business during an emergency.
- Preventing Injury
Incorrectly using fire extinguishers can put users at risk of injury including burns and smoke inhalation. Improper training could also lead to an employee using the wrong type of extinguisher which could accidentally lead to the fire growing beyond control due to the extinguisher not being suited for effectively putting it out. Receiving hands-on training from a professional helps to mitigate this risk and keep all employees involved safe and informed.
- Preventing Damage
An employee who is able to effectively extinguish a fire can save you thousands in loss and damages. Because the fire is more likely to be caught and put out before it can spread, your business location can remain relatively unscathed and able to continue operating without major delays or loss of profit.
- OSHA Requirments
Unless your business has a clear plan for dealing with an emergency fire, all employees should evacuate the building and wait for professional assistance. However, if you have employees who are assigned to handle fire extinguishers, OSHA mandates strict training which they must undergo. All employees who are officially assigned to these roles must receive hands-on training and the training must be provided by the employer. This ensures that employees are trained with the specific equipment you have on hand so that they know how to properly operate that equipment.
Who Needs Training?
As touched on above, unless your emergency plan specifically states that all employees must evacuate, OSHA requires some form of training for employees. This can be as simple as making them watch an educational video, giving them an instructional hand-out, or having a yearly talk about proper usage. However, if anyone is specifically assigned to the roll, hands-on in-depth training is required by OSHA.
When Should Training Begin?
If training with fire extinguishers is required, the designated employee should be trained upon employment. Training should then be repeated annually to ensure they retain the knowledge and stay up to date with the latest methods.
If you are a business owner and want to help safeguard your business from potentially devastating fire damage take a moment to review your emergency planning and consider investing in a fire extinguisher training course for your employees. This, coupled with effective first aid training, can be the difference between saving your business and losing thousands to devastating damages.