When disaster strikes, it’s too late to plan and prepare; these things must happen well in advance. Though you, of course, hope to never need to spring a fire escape plan into action, having one in place can save lives. If you don’t have such a plan in your Florida office, or if you haven’t reviewed yours in a while, make this a priority today.
An emergency escape plan is at its best when it has input from several key people. This isn’t a plan you or someone else should come up with on a whim. It requires a group discussion and varying ideas.
• Consider selecting an emergency response committee.
• Meet regularly to review past plans and determine what improvements you should make.
• Open the group to your organization; invite people to participate who have experience or expertise in devising such plans.
Know Your Space
If a fire starts in your building, it’s vital that everyone exits in a calm and orderly manner. Employees must be swift, however, and this means they need to know how and where to properly exit. Identify all possible exits on each floor and in all areas of your building.
You can’t have a mad rush for the stairs or the doors if you need to evacuate the building. You also want someone to sweep the building for stragglers and someone else to count people once you’re outside. Make sure someone is covering these important duties.
Practice Makes Perfect
No fire escape plan should be complete without holding consistent drills. At least annually, practice exiting the building and meeting at a designated spot in a safe location near your building.
Don’t wait until it’s too late to make your fire escape plan. Firefighters and restoration crews will do their jobs. Make sure you do yours too.