Employee Training for a Fire Emergency

A fire is the most common type of emergency for which a business must plan. When there is a fire emergency, getting workers out of building may pose challenges. Preparing in advance to safely evacuate your building is critical to the safety of employees who work there.

What should your employees know before an emergency occurs?

According to OSHA, employees should:

  • Be familiar with the worksite’s emergency evacuation plan.
  • Know the pathway to at least two exits from every room/area in the workplace.
  • Recognize the sound/signaling method of the evacuation or other alarms and their different meanings.
  • Understand who to contact in an emergency, as well as the specific procedures they will be expected to use.
  • Know how far their workstation is to the closest exit access routes in case they need to evacuate in the dark.
  • Know where the fire/evacuation alarms are located and how to use them.
  • Report damaged or malfunctioning safety systems and back-up systems.
  • Report to their supervisor any changes in health that may affect their ability to safely evacuate.
  • What about when an actual emergency occurs?

In this case, employees should be trained as follows:

  • Listen carefully for instructions over the building’s internal communication system and follow the instructions.
  • When instructed, leave the area quickly, but in an orderly manner, following the work site’s emergency evacuation plan.
  • Do not use elevators when evacuating a burning building, unless they are properly designed and designated “occupant evacuation elevators.”
  • Report to the designated meeting place, and ensure they make contact with the person charged with worker accountability.
  • Do not re-enter the building until directed to do so by authorities.