Eight fire safety tips that could save your property – and your life

20 September 2018 - 11:26 By Timeslive
The burning Bank of Lisbon building in Johannesburg in which three firefighters died. File photo
The burning Bank of Lisbon building in Johannesburg in which three firefighters died. File photo
Image: Thapelo Morebudi

Johannesburg Emergency Management Services (EMS) has provided a fire safety checklist for property and business owners.

Following the deadly blaze at the Bank of Lisbon building‚ the Gauteng government removed workers from at least nine buildings‚ which it said did not meet basic Occupational Health & Safety (OHS) compliance standards.

In the capital‚ Tshwane mayor Solly Msimanga recently shut down the Poyntons Building‚ the department of correctional services’ head office‚ used by up to 1‚600 people‚ citing serious safety concerns.

City of Johannesburg EMS spokesman Robert Mulaudzi urged property and business owners‚ as well as the occupants of buildings‚ to ensure that their buildings are safe.

“Safety is everyone’s responsibility. Let us all do our part to ensure a safer environment‚” he said

He provided the following safety checklist:

- Check your fire extinguishing systems - such as smoke detectors‚ sprinklers‚ fire hose reels and fire extinguishers - are in good working order. This equipment must be serviced regularly. Residential homes should have an adequate fire extinguisher readily available.

- Ensure safety signs are clearly displayed‚ in accordance with the Occupational Health & Safety Act.

- Fire escapes‚ exits and stairways must be clear of any obstacles at all times.

- Fire doors and smoke screens must be properly secured.

- Have an evacuation plan in place‚ appoint emergency marshals and conduct drill exercises regularly.

- Flammables must be securely stored and comply with safety regulations.

- Do not leave open flames unattended.

- Inspect electrical connections and any potential sources of fire to avoid accidents.