What You Should Know About Fire Safety in the Workplace

In Australian fire safety standards, who is responsible for fire safety? Management has a responsibility to manage all health and safety risks (ss17 and 19 of the WHS Act), including fire. Employees have a responsibility to comply and cooperate with management’s policies and procedures (s28 of the WHS Act), including management of risks relating to fire.
In addition to Acts and policies, there are other relevant Australian fire safety standards which include building fire safety regulation. The main objective of this regulation is to ensure persons can evacuate buildings safely and quickly if a fire or hazardous materials emergency happens and to ensure prescribed fire safety installations for buildings are maintained.

Steps to Prevent Fire in the Workplace


  • Implement a program that includes preparation, prevention, and recognition of fire hazards.
  • Practice proper handling of combustible and flammable material.
  • Keep up safe housekeeping rehearses that lessen the danger of flame threat.
  • Continuously keep sufficient fire suppression equipment in your work area to extinguish the fire before it goes out of control.

General Safety Measures


Photo Credit: Luis Alberto Gonzalez


Fire precautions necessary in establishing and maintaining fire protection in the workplace:

  • Never pile or lay material in a way that it covers or blocks access to firefighting equipment.
  • Make sure to use only approved containers for the separation and disposal of combustible refuse. Remember to always replace the lid.
  • Never store flammable materials within 10 feet of a building or other structure.
  • Stack and pile all materials in orderly and stable piles.
  • Never let unnecessary combustible materials get accumulated in any part of your work area.
  • Make a periodic clean-up of entire work site and keep grass and weeds under control.
  • Regularly dispose of combustible debris and scrap from your work area.
  • Use only approved containers and tanks for storage, handling, and transport of combustible and flammable liquid.
  • Always perform evaluation procedures before performing operations that present fire hazards like welding.

Prevention is always better than cure and it’s best to evade calamity in any case or at least minimize the damage. The simple truth is that fire crises and calamities can strike anybody, whenever, and anyplace. So, if a fire breaks out in your work workplace A-C-T, Don’t Panic



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