How to Improve Fire Safety in Your Warehouse

A fire burning in the darkness.

It should go without saying that fire safety is crucial no matter what. It needs to be a top priority for any business owner, regardless of the nature of the enterprise. This is because we must treat a hazard that can cause not only a lot of property damage but also loss of life with the utmost caution. Therefore, if you have not made sure that your warehouse is as safe as possible, here is how to improve fire safety in your warehouse.  

1. Make Sure That You Comply with Fire Safety Regulations

In accordance with national regulations and recommendations, you need to conduct a proper and adequate fire risk assessment of your warehouse. This is especially the case if you are moving into a new warehouse. The dangers you face are heavily influenced by the combustibility of the stock and the packaging. However, the nature of the processes, the interior architecture, and the manner of storage also influence fire safety. The main elements you need to focus on are:

  • The physical separation of the warehouse from industrial facilities and other on-site activities
  • Construction of an emergency response plan to preserve life and property and assure the business's continued operation in the event of a fire
  • The presence of sprinkler systems and other permanent fire suppression systems
  • Staff training on what to do in case of a fire, including a safe shutdown of conveyors or similar equipment in the vicinity and evacuation of the premises

A warehouse stocked with inventory.

2. You Need to Be Able to Manage All Fire Risks

If your warehouse is storing a large amount of inventory, you must develop a close relationship with your local fire department. It is a good idea to have the fire department come to your warehouse to familiarize themselves with the layout. This way, they will be made aware of all potential fire hazards as well as the location of available water sources in the area. You should consider whatever they say and organize your warehouse accordingly. In addition, the fire department can advise you on the best fire prevention systems for your warehouse. Following that, you should follow all of the fire department's recommended fire safety procedures.

3. Install Appropriate Alarm and Detection Systems

You need to install Automatic fire detection and alarm systems. As experts from or any other expert that deals with storage, will tell you, prevention is key. That is why these systems are so important. With that said, as we've mentioned earlier, your fire department will tell you the best solution for your individual situation. However, since fire detection systems are a highly regulated safety measure, it shouldn't be too difficult to find the necessary documentation that will help you to install them correctly. You need to service and maintain these systems on a regular basis. You should connect conveyors, automated packing, and similar equipment to the automatic fire detection and alarm system for maximum safety. This way, the flow of items will stop when the system activates. 

A fire alarm system on a pink wall.

4. A Fire Extinguishing System Will Improve Fire Safety

If you want to maximize the security of your warehouse, you need to have an effective fire suppression system. The first thing you need to make sure you have in your warehouse is a sprinkler system. The only sprinkler systems you should consider are the ones that their-party accredited companies make. You must make sure that your sprinkler system is in compliance with national requirements. This is important to do because insurance companies, for example, often require you to have a sprinkler system. When it comes to the type of sprinklers that you will need, there are two main ones:

  1. In-rack sprinklers: You need to place these sprinkler heads near every rack in your warehouse
  2. Foam-enhanced sprinklers: You must place these near any plastic pallets in your warehouse

A fire extinguisher mounted on a wall.jpg

Furthermore, one of the best ways how to improve fire safety in your warehouse is to have adequate portable fire extinguishers present and instantly accessible in the event of a fire. If you have portable fire extinguishers, you need to inspect them regularly. Many third-party authorized institutions can help you with this. Additionally, you need to place these fire extinguishers in high-traffic areas. If you do this, you will make your warehouse much safer.