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California's fires give us all a reason to get prepared

May 27, 2014

How pre-fire planning can help save your business and help save lives.

forest wildfire

On Tuesday, May 6, state, local, and federal officials said in an article from The San Diego Union-Tribune, that a bone-dry California is poised for its worst fire season ever and they urged residents to be prepared.

“We are right now looking at a pretty tough wildfire season,” said U.S. Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell. “Cal Fire has already fought 1,244 wildfires (this year) – that’s triple the average for that period of time. And it’s not going to get better over the course of this year. That’s something every citizen of California should know and they should take steps to protect their communities and their homes.”

Whether you live in California or elsewhere, protecting your community, home or business this year can be more important than ever. The National Fire Protection Association recommends setting up a Pre-Incident Plan to help in case of emergencies. These plans consist of the information outlined here:

  • The layout of the building on the property, including parking lot entrances, building entrances, building key box location, hydrant locations, nearby structures, etc.
  • A complete floor plan of each level of the building, including locations of hazardous materials and processes, heating and air conditioning equipment, utility shutoffs, and elevators.
  • Pertinent structural features such as building size, height, construction and fire-rated walls.
  • Description of occupancies.
  • Site features such as occupants with special rescue needs, unoccupied floors, daytime and nighttime occupancy loads, etc.
  • Alarm system information.
  • Hydrant information (“fire flow”).
  • Building fire protection systems.

To be as effective as possible, written plans must be easy to understand, accessible and updated on a regular basis. Doing so can not only save your home or business, it can also save lives.

To see all of what the NFPA suggests for fire safety in your business and to see what Zurich suggests for protecting your property, click here.

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