Nearly 5,000 fires take place per day during the summer, which ranks second in fire incidence rates compared to other seasons, according to the United States Fire Administration. Between company cookouts and extra wear and tear on cooling and landscaping equipment, commercial buildings are vulnerable to fire damage.
Cintas Corporation, a provider of fire protection services, offers these six tips to lower your likelihood of a summertime fire.
1) HVAC maintenance: Dust can settle over capacitors and other electrical components and cause tracking faults, which can create fires. Running multiple cooling units together consistently and for long periods of time can result in overloading and overheating, which also presents an opportunity for fires to start.
2) Exhaust fan cleaning: Clean out your exhaust fans regularly and clear debris out of the vents. Avoid running fans consistently for long periods.
3) Lawn mower care: Follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule on your mowing equipment. Remember to regularly remove debris and grass clippings from cutting units, mufflers, and engines. Never refuel a lawn mower if it’s overheated.
4) Gas storage: Fire risk is heightened by high ambient temperatures and relief valves that open at too-low pressures. Store gas cylinders upright and never indoors.
5) Grilling safety: Do you keep a grill on site for company cookouts? Keep it away from your facility and any overhanging branches. Maintain a safe zone of 3 feet around the grill. Regularly remove grease and gat buildup from the grills and the trays below the grilling components. Never leave a grill unattended no matter what.
6) Alarm audits: Your preventive maintenance should include fire alarm testing. Replace any old or burned out batteries regularly. A certified fire protection provider can help you streamline your fire protection program and keep track of required inspections.