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6 Fire Safety and Evacuation Tips for Retail Stores in Albany

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When a fire happens in Albany- every passing second and every minute counts.

In the event of a fire in a retail or commercial space, once you hear alarm bells sound off, the NZ Emergency and Fire Services should be called immediately.

But a fire breakout in an Albany retail store is a special case. Unlike offices or schools where people know each other, and practice fire drills on a schedule. There’s a factor that sets a retail environment apart in a fire emergency- you are talking about a high number of unknown people in a communal public space at any given time. This means that some these people may tend to be uncooperative of unsure what to do, during an emergency.

If a fire happens during a busy day, you can expect to maneuver crowds of shoppers towards safety, and that’s no easy feat. Everyone should evacuate quickly and in this scenario, you will be relying on your employees to handle the matter the best they can.

Fire Prevention Tips for your Whangarei Office

Here are 6 tips that can help you during a fire emergency in your Albany retail store:

  1. First fire safety tip is an indispensable one; make sure you have the right fire extinguisher for your store. There are many kinds of fire extinguishers and each kind is meant to combat a specific type of fire. You can consult an expert such as Fireco to give you the best Fire extinguisher recommendation that’s suited for your retail store in Albany.
  2. Fire extinguisher units should be installed in clearly visible areas. More importantly, you should have more than one fire extinguisher, ensuring one is placed near the cashier or counter; where an employee familiar with operating a fire extinguisher can quickly reach for it.
  3. At the very least, your employees should have undergone basic fire safety training. If you haven’t provided a fire safety training program, call us to schedule a safety session. This is to ensure your retail employees have a clear idea on fire safety and prevention- like what to do when a fire breaks out.
  4. During evacuation employees should exude calm and be mindful to stay in control. They should guide customers towards the exits in a calm and authoritative demeanor to avoid any panic or confusion. When customers feel assured and see how calm the retail staff are, they will find no reason to panic or behave aggressively.
  5. Be extra assertive. Some customers may not take the fire alarm seriously and may resist leaving the retail premises. Some may insist to finish their shopping or take all their bulky shopping items along. Employees can assure them that these items will still be there in the store, restocked or replaced after the issue is addressed. One must stress the importance of safety and rally the stubborn customers towards the exits quickly. Remind the customer that no item is worth their lives or even taking the risk.
  6. Designate responsible people to take charge. Going back to the importance of fire safety training, it’s during the training sessions that designated fire wardens are selected among employees. This is to ensure that someone within the group will take charge of evacuating people safely. For this duty, they are issued high visibility emergency jackets so they can easily be identified and followed by customers during evacuation. The fire wardens will also check closed off areas such as restrooms, storage rooms, break rooms, and dressing rooms. They will check that no employee or customer is left behind. Once everyone is out they can also watch and guard the exit door, this is to assist those still coming out and making sure no one tries to enter the premises in an attempt to find a missing co-worker or to retrieve an item left behind.

 

There’s no telling when a fire emergency may strike, so it’s best that your retail business is well prepared.

For retail shops in Albany in need of fire safety equipment and fire safety training call us today for a free, no-obligation quote. Fireco is the leading fire safety expert in Northland — call our hotline at Fireco 0800 101 232 or email info@fireco.co.nz

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