According to the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA), employers should provide adequate fire extinguishers at the workplace. Also, employers should provide appropriate training on how to operate them. It is essential to train employees to understand as well as determine how and when to use fire extinguishers. Training sessions are held when an individual is hired and then annually for all employees (OSHA, n.d.). According to Sanghi & Ambrose (2016), an organization should also establish a policy that clarifies employees who are qualified to use fire extinguishers, outline situations that warrant the use of fire extinguishers and outline proper procedures for usage.
When an organization has established a well-defined and structured fire prevention plan, employees are encouraged to adhere to it. Moreover, it is crucial for an organization’s management to explain to employees what they are supposed to do in case of a fire hazard. Regular maintenance and inspection of fire extinguishers are required. Thus, an organization should conduct a visual inspection to ascertain that fire extinguishers are identified and adequately mounted at all times. To ensure employees understand how to use fire extinguishers and to ensure they adhere to the set policies, a facility should use the following monitoring tools.
This tool monitors the success of training efforts on how to use fire extinguishers. A trained professional observes employees as they describe how to use fire extinguishers appropriately and then watches as they demonstrate using a real extinguisher. It is important to use trained individuals to ensure the process maintains quality standards. Trained observers also report objectively to the management for action to be taken to improve compliance. Correct observation requires experience and skill, as the person uses a guideline that details what is expected of an employee. This document is used as a checklist of those employees who complete the training successfully and those who do not (Yeturu et al., 2016). After this process, the facility’s management can use the results to identify people who have enough qualifications and understanding to use the fire extinguishers and those who do not.
Knowledge of Fire Extinguisher Survey
Knowledge of fire extinguishers survey can be administered to all employees to evaluate their level of comprehension on how to use fire extinguishers in the workplace. Sanghi & Ambrose (2016) point out that this survey helps establish employees’ level of understanding of the usage of fire extinguishers. Therefore, it helps ascertain training needs on fire safety and fire extinguisher use throughout the facility. Rather than always take employees through the same things, this survey establishes areas that need more training. Trainers thus put more emphasis on specific areas, thus helping increase compliance levels.
Training can also be used as a compliance tool. Sanghi & Ambrose (2016) argue that when workers are put through live training, trainers can evaluate their level of comprehension and expertise. Training exposes employees to most of the dangers associated with actual infernos. It also involves staged scenarios that require the use of various fire extinguishing skills using an extinguisher. That is why fire emergency situations should be simulated from time to time.
OSHA. (n.d.). Portable fire extinguisher OSHA requirements. Web.
Sanghi, A., & Ambrose, R. K. (2016). Analysis of the effect of prevailing weather conditions on the occurrence of grain dust explosions. Journal of agricultural safety and health, 22(3), 187-197.
Yeturu, S. K., Annapurani, R., Janakiram, C., Joseph, J., & Pentapati, K. C. (2016). Assessment of Knowledge and attitudes of fire safety-an institution based study. Journal of Pharmaceutical Sciences and Research, 8(11), 1281-1283.