Is your restaurant protected against a potential fire? Fires can be so costly that they can cause a restaurant to go out of business. In fact, approximately 8,000 restaurant fires occur every year, and together these fires cause around $246 million worth of damage. However, many restaurant fires can be prevented. Here’s how.
1. Install an Automatic Fire-Suppression System
Do your staff members know how to correctly respond to a grease fire? If someone unknowingly pours water on a grease fire, the fire will spread and make for a much more dangerous situation.
Instead of relying on employees alone to fight cooking equipment fires, it is much more feasible to install an automatic fire-suppression system to protect your restaurant.
When an automatic fire-suppression system is triggered, it will spray extinguishing chemicals down on the fire to quell the flames. It will also kill the power to nearby machines to prevent the spread of the fire. Additionally, a manual switch can allow employees to activate the system if needed.
Your fire-suppression system should be maintained and inspected periodically throughout the year to make sure that it will be ready to respond to a fire when needed.
2. Maintain Your Portable Fire Extinguishers
First, you'll need to make sure you have the right types of extinguishers. Class K extinguishers are needed in the kitchen since they are made to combat grease fires. However, they should ideally be used after the built-in hood suppression system has been activated, giving your fire-suppression system a chance to do its job of killing power to nearby equipment.
Your fire equipment company can also provide you with tailored help to make sure you select the correct fire extinguishers for your kitchen.
Portable Fire Extinguishers are a good backup in the event of a fire. However, you want to be certain that the fire extinguisher will not fail when you pull the pin and pass it over a potential fire. Most people don't think about having fire extinguishers serviced until it's too late, but fire extinguishers are a crucial part of a first line of defense against fires.
3. Maintain Your Kitchen Equipment
Dirty or faulty equipment doesn't only cost you more on your energy bill, it can also be a fire hazard. Employees should thoroughly clean restaurant equipment daily to prevent a harmful buildup of grease from catching on fire. Have your kitchen equipment and outlets regularly maintained by an electrician and an appliance technician so that electrical fire hazards like frayed cords or damaged wiring can be replaced.
Proper maintenance of your equipment can prolong the life of your equipment and protect against major malfunctions. This is because routine maintenance will allow small problems to be repaired before they escalate into bigger issues that require replacement of entire machines.
4. Train Your Staff on Handling Fire Emergencies
Does your staff know where to find the fire extinguishers and how to use them? Do they know that you shouldn't soak a grease fire with water? Do they know how to evacuate customers and themselves safely from the building? You should have a fire emergency plan, and employees should be trained on how to carry it out safely.
A Few Final Thoughts
In addition to following the tips above, you should also have your exhaust system regularly checked for grease buildup. That is because a stove fire can flare up into the exhaust system, catching it on fire as well if it is not clean and clear. If you are in need of fire protection equipment at your restaurant, contact FireWatch , a proud distributor of Guardian Fire Suppression Systems.