Protect your property from fire
Fires are a very real concern for any facility and can result in catastrophic loss, injury and death.
Year after year, they are one of the leading causes of property loss for Church Mutual customers. Over the last five years alone, customers have reported an average of one fire loss every 13 hours, accruing to an average of over $63 million in fire losses per year.
To help you reduce your risk of fire and protect both your people and your building, Church Mutual has compiled the following steps you can take.
When using stoves, ovens, grills and fryers, follow these tips:
- If a fire starts while you are cooking with grease or oil, immediately place a cover over the pan and shut off the stove.
- Never leave any heat-producing appliance unattended.
- Do not place aluminum foil or metal in a microwave.
- Turn pot handles inward on the stove to avoid bumping them.
- Have a professional inspect your ventilating hood system at least annually.
- Keep paper products away from any heat-producing appliance.
- Do not throw hot grease into a garbage can.
Electrical and heating system fires
Electronic devices, faulty wiring and heating systems can all cause fires if you’re not careful. Keep the following tips in mind:
- Only use one heat-producing appliance at a time per outlet.
- Do not perform electrical work yourself — hire a licensed electrician.
- Never store anything within three feet of an electrical box.
- Install a ground fault circuit interrupter to shut off electricity if conditions warrant.
- Always turn off portable heaters when leaving the room.
- Hire a professional to clean your boiler and furnace.
- Keep mechanical rooms free from combustibles and flammables.
- Line the furnace room door with fire-resistant material.
- Use a screen with fireplaces.
While you can’t control others’ actions, you can make it more difficult for would-be arsonists to follow through with their plans.
- Keep gasoline and other fuel sources locked away.
- Make it difficult for intruders to hide outside your building by maintaining adequate lighting and trimming shrubbery.
- Trim tree branches that might allow second-story access.
- Keep ladders locked away.
- Install deadbolt locks on all outside doors.
- Maintain good relationships with local police and ask them to include your facility in their regular patrols.
- Request detailed inspections from police and fire officials annually.
General fire prevention
- Take a quick tour of your building interior at least once a month and look for places where fires might start, such as piles of rags or overloaded electrical outlets.
- All exit doors should open outward, with no locks that could prevent people from escaping in an emergency.
- All exits should be marked clearly with lighted signs.
- Keep exits free of obstructions.
To access additional fire preparedness and prevention information, resources and more, visit churchmutual.com/firesafety.