A fire drill procedure in childcare centres serves as your life support during emergencies. It is the fundamental basis for order and maximum safety in any fire incident. With that said, building managers and safety officers are urged to create an emergency evacuation plan as a guide to all the staff and children.
If you are just venturing into safety practices or looking towards improving your existing plan, here is a basic guide for day care centres.
Fire Drill Procedures
Fire drills are based on regulations, policies, and procedures designed to respond to any given situation involving fire. Though one event may be different from the other, they both end up using a standard basis for response and evacuation as follows:
Identify the Possible Threats
Assess the situation whether the threats are minor or may require immediate evacuation. Usually, a quick assessment can determine the location of the fire and its level of danger, which can tell you what to do next.
Stay Calm and Raise the Alarm
As a role model, panicking will only cause the children to panic, leading to uncontrollable situations. Remember to quickly raise the alarm and give appropriate instructions for the given situation.
Evaluate the Situation
In circumstances when the fire calls for immediate evacuation, lead the children out of the area. As part of safety measures, close the windows to confine the fire. Once the children have evacuated and gathered in the evacuation area, do a headcount to ensure no one is left behind.
Call the Fire Brigade
Notify the fire brigade immediately through phoning 000 and give necessary information such as location of the fire and your evacuation centre location for immediate assistance.
It is best to always check attendance to make sure no one has left the premises without notice. Children are grouped together and given full assistance at all times.
Get the Emergency Kits
The kits have to be readily available at the evacuation room for the kids. These usually have the necessities such as water, nappies, parents’ numbers and some toys to divert their attention from the incident.
Wait for Instructions
An authorized incident controller is responsible for declaring the status of the place and whether it is safe to go back or not. Wait for instructions before going out of the evacuation centre.
You might have heard of this many times before, but it is always necessary to keep in mind the acronym “RACE” in responding to fire. If you need a bit of a refresher, take note of these steps:
Rescue people, especially those who need assistance. Children will need more guidance in this stage so it is important to stay alert while doing so.
Activate alarms in all areas. Automatic fire detectors and alarms immediately respond to all building occupants and fire brigade. Ensure that these are well maintained and fully operational.
Confine the fire by preventing it from spreading. Close all door and windows before the fire spreads to neighbouring rooms.
Extinguish fire if it is necessary. Based on quick and right judgment, one should be able to determine if a flame is controllable. If so, immediately extinguish it using available fire suppression equipment in the area.
Children are quite vulnerable to these types of incidents because they may not fully understand it, and their response to it can be a major setback. Every childcare centre holds the responsibility to establish fire drill procedures and must pass the fire drill evaluation. For assistance, call a fire safety expert today.