Restaurant Fire Safety

Owning a restaurant comes with plenty of safety concerns, but fire damage is undoubtedly one of the most catastrophic. According to the National Fire Protection Association, approximately 8,000 restaurants in the US are damaged by fire every year. It’s important to thoroughly understand the fire codes enforced by your state and municipality; most codes can be found using the CodeFinder tool. In today’s blog we discuss the basics of restaurant fire safety. This list is by no means comprehensive, but it is a great resource for those looking for direction.

Required Fire Protection Equipment
All commercial buildings in New York must be equipped with:
-Fire sprinkler systems
-Commercial fire suppression systems
-Readily available portable fire extinguishers
-Emergency exit lighting

Maintain Your Equipment
Scheduling regular maintenance on electrical equipment and systems is crucial for everything to stay in working order. Some system components, such as fire extinguishers and alarms, require annual inspections while others, such as vent hoods and exhaust systems, may need monthly cleanings. Keep a watchful eye out for hazards like frayed cords or wiring, as repairs like these cannot wait.

Train Your Staff
Kitchen employees must undergo training regarding cleaning, safety, and fire precautions in the workplace. Ongoing training should also be conducted at least twice a year. All employees should know the restaurant’s emergency fire plan to ensure the safety of staff and customers.

Safe Storage
Storing supplies properly is essential to the functionality of any restaurant. Paper products should be kept tidy and away from cooking surfaces. Flammable liquids should be kept in their original containers in a well-ventilated area away from supplies, food, or cooking surfaces. Additionally, refrain from storing anything that will block stairways or emergency exits.

Minimizing the risk of a fire starts with understanding of safety codes, proper equipment and prepared staff. After installation is complete, ensure your restaurant meets fire code compliance prior to serving your first customer. From there, TCE can help take care of evaluating and addressing your risk, so that you can worry about growing your business. For more information about our Restaurant Insurance, contact TCE.