As a business owner or facility manager, having a fire inspection checklist can help ensure the safety and security of your property and personnel. Many of the items on your checklist may be handled internally, while others will require a trained professional. Following is a list to be sure you are doing what's needed to mitigate the threat of fire damage. After you answer each item, hit "calculate" to receive a summary report of how well you are doing.

Checks for Your Fire Protection Expert

1.

Just like a smoke alarm with a dead battery, it's hard to know if your fire sprinkler system or fire suppression system is working without a "look under the hood." Your fire protection service provider should be inspecting system pressure gauges, condition and functionality of control valves, sprinkler heads and more. The technician should also be on the lookout for signs of wear and tear so you don't end up with a surprise leak that could have been prevented. Failure to carry out inspections can not only increase the damage caused by a fire, it can also diminish the chances that your insurance company will cover damages. Is your fire sprinkler or suppression system being inspected on a consistent basis in accordance with your insurance company's requirements?

Fire sprinkler system inspection consistency and compliance

2.

Unless you have only a small amount of storage in your facility, you may be privy to fire code regulations related to how much is being stored, where it's being stored (such as in basements or high-pile warehouses) and how it's being stored (such as in approved storage cabinets). Are your stored items being stored in accordance with the fire code?

Safe, compliant storage

For more relevant, practical information about Fire Inspection Checklist, sign up to receive our free quarterly email newsletter.

3.

Fire extinguishers have to be inspected annually and serviced every three years. Similar to any piece of equipment, extinguishers need to be checked to ensure they are functional. They can lose pressure, show signs of corrosion and leak. Are your fire extinguishers being inspected on a consistent basis in accordance with your insurance company's requirements?

Fire extinguisher inspection consistency and compliance

Checks That May be Handled Internally

4.

Smoking in the workplace is a definite fire hazard, so be sure your employees know what is allowed and what isn't. Do you have smoking regulations established with signs posted, where applicable?

Smoking regulation clarity and enforcement

5.

Diethyl ether, ethylene oxide, some light crude oils, lacquers, lacquer thinners and some paints are flammable and have special storage needs away from combustible liquids such as cooking oils, lubricating oils and motor oil. Are you safely storing flammables away from combustibles?

Storage of flammable and combustible items

6.

A buildup of flammable solid waste can pose a fire hazard. Is trash or rubbish being removed from your facility on a regular basis?

Trash removal regularity

7.

When a circuit breaker trips, you know that a safety issue is at hand. Outlets aren't always so telling. Unsafe outlets and cords can start fires, especially when they are overworked and damaged. Are all of your electrical plugs, switches and cords in good repair and in safe places?

Condition and location of electrical plugs, switches and cords

8.

Pieces of equipment and appliances make our lives easier, but they can't be completely ignored. Space heaters should be kept away from curtains and papers. Coffee makers and other kitchen items should be unplugged when not in use. Be sure larger producers of heat like clothes dryers and even more substantial factory equipment are well ventilated and that those ventilation systems are clear to do their jobs. Are the heat-producing appliances in your facility being used safely?

Safe use of heat-producing appliances

9.

Cleanliness is next to godliness — and fire safety. Stacks of old papers, piles of cardboard and leaks from equipment can be fire hazards. If a fire does start and you need to escape, you want to be sure that doorways, stairwells and corridors aren't obstructed. Is your facility clean and neat?

Facility cleanliness

10.

Be sure you have a fire escape plan and that everyone in your building knows what it is and how to follow it. It should be plainly marked and posted. Exits — always left unlocked from the inside during working hours — should also be plainly marked, oftentimes with a lighted sign. Do you have an escape plan and is it common knowledge?

Escape plan clarity and enforcement

11.

If your fire alarm isn't in proper working order, it's not going to work. With a test button on most models, checking the batteries is simple. Is your smoke alarm in good working order?

Smoke alarm functionality

12.

When a fire is small, a portable fire extinguisher can be very useful in extinguishing flames or keeping them from spreading. Do you have a fire extinguisher that is mounted, accessible and visible?

Fire extinguisher accessibility and visibility

13.

Fire hydrants and connections should be highly visible and easy for your local fire department to find and use. Is the area around your hydrant free from debris and vegetation?

Fire hydrant accessibility and visibility

14.

The fuses in your electrical control box should be labeled, and access to them should be easy. If a firefighter needs to turn off power at your facility because of a fire, be sure it's easy to do. Is your electrical control box labeled and accessible?

Electrical control box clarity and accessibility

15.

It is very important to keep your fire inspection records handy so that you can easily produce them if they are requested. Are your records easily accessible?

Fire inspection records accessibility

16.

If dumpsters are located too close to a combustible wall, roof overhang, window or door, a fire inside of them can spread to a building. Is your dumpster located in a safe place?

Trash dumpster location safety

At Brenneco, our entire inspection process is based on checklists that follow the applicable NFPA 25 codes. We use literally hundreds of checklists, which help us maintain a track record of excellence. If you need more information about a Fire Inspection Checklist, visit our blog for answers or contact us directly. We are happy to help.

Summary

How well are you safeguarding your business and employees from the threat of a fire? After you have answered the above questions, hit "calculate" to create a summary report.

What you're doing right

Though this checklist isn't comprehensive, it looks like you are doing things right. Keep up the good work on the following items:

What you need to work on

You have some work to do. Contact Brenneco Fire Protection, your fire protection service provider or launch an internal plan to help you turn the following hazards around:

What you're not sure about

You should have doubts about how well you are protected from the threat of a fire. Contact Brenneco Fire Protection or your fire protection service provider to help you address the following concerns:

Oops, there was a problem.

Please make sure that you've answered either yes, no, or not sure for each checklist item.

For more relevant, practical information about Fire Inspection Checklist, sign up to receive our free quarterly email newsletter.