Combustible dust explosions, bomb threats, extreme weather – these all need manufacturing firms to switch into emergency gear. Since the aforementioned situations unavoidably prompt panic, the best way to manage them is by having a plan in place. Here we have outlined the 7 essential elements of an emergency evacuation plan in NZ.
Conditions needing an evacuation:
Several conditions can trigger an emergency situation but not all of them would need an evacuation. Whether you need to evacuate or not relies on many factors including the kind of emergency & the building characteristics (e.g., the construction materials, the number of stories). Your plan must stipulate precisely the conditions that need an evacuation.
Conditions under which it would be safer to stay indoor:
In some circumstances, it’d be safer to stay indoors, for instance, if there is toxic chemicals in the outside environment. In these circumstances, you need to have a chosen interior room where visitors and employees can gather.
A clear chain of command:
Who’s accountable for evaluating the situation & deciding if an evacuation is essential? Who’ll take charge on every floor of a multistory building? What about informing emergency services? Ensure everybody knows precisely what their responsibility is and is trained in performing it efficiently.
Specific evacuation practices:
The locations of all emergency routes, exits and equipment must be marked & kept clear of obstructions at all times. In the event your building has several interior spaces, for example, stairwells without windows, consider painting arrows & marking exits with photo luminescent paint, which glimmers in the dark.
Procedures for helping employees and visitors to evacuate:
A good rule of thumb is to appoint one “evacuation warden” for every twenty visitors or employees. The evacuation supervisor checks offices, closes fire doors, and so forth. Also the warden should consult the visitor log to ensure all visitors – who mightn’t be acquainted with the building evacuation route & exits – get to safety.
Designation of who’ll stay after the evacuation alarm to close critical operations:
In a manufacturing unit, it’s not always possible to close everything at a time. This is where, particular employees may have to stay behind to close the machines & utilities. If you’ve appointed people for this role, ensure they also know when it is time to jump ship for their own safety.
In some emergency cases, you may be needed to supply PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) including, but are not limited to:
- Safety shoes and hard hats
- Safety glasses, goggles, or face shields
- Chemical suits, gloves, hoods, and boots
- Special body protection for uncharacteristic environmental states
This article is written by Fireaway Building Compliance – a service provider specializes in preparing emergency evacuation plans in NZ.