A fire safety plan is a subset of an emergency plan which is designed to prevent and handle fire emergencies. The safety plan seeks to pre-empt all possible fire scenario so as to reduce the possibility of their occurrence or to reduce their impact if they eventually occur.
So we can state the aims of a fire safety plan as follows:
- Reduce the chances of the occurrence of a fire disaster in a facility
- Reduce the impact of fire outbreaks if they eventually occur.
We can detail the steps in Fire safety planning (and of course all emergency plans) as follows:
- Brainstorming, information gathering and planning
- Execution, Installation, Designing, and training
- Periodic Reviews and Reporting
- Re-planning and updating.
Brainstorming, information gathering and planning.
This step of the fire safety planning enables us to think about our work (or home) environment (facility) in order to identify fire hazards (things likely to cause fire outbreak), factors likely to impair response to a fire emergency, and many other factors. During this stage, effort is made to articulate who or what is most at risk if a fire scenario happens. These facts are usually gathered into a document called a Fire Risk Assessment or Fire Vulnerability Assessment.
Execution, Installation, Designing, and Training.
After we are done with profiling our facility and writing out a response plan, the next step is to implement the plans. Implementation includes:
- Constructing the facility with fire response in mind
- Installing fire management equipment
- Installing facility maps, emergency maps, and instructions.
- Training of users of the facility
- Assignment of duties and establishing chain of command for emergency situations.
Periodic Reviews and Reporting
We will usually find out that there is need to review our emergency plan to see how it solves our need. There also need to write reports on what has been done. The reports are very helpful for communication within and without the organization. Opinions from facility users and major stake holders are needed during the review. Also periodic drills (Simulation of an emergency situation) are very helpful.
Redesigning and updating
Changes in the facility and in operations necessitate the updating of emergency plans and equipment. For example if a manufacturing procedure has been changed or a major raw material has been changed, there is need to tinker the emergency plan to accommodate the changes.
We should mention that Fire Safety Planning is a multi-stakeholder concept. There is need to take along stakeholders from both within and without the organization. The State or Local government authorities through their establishments (such as fire service and emergency management agencies) hold a major stake in emergency planning. They are therefore to be part of an organizations planning process.
Learn more about Fire safety planning, see our article on Fire Preparedness.
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