If you are an apartment manager or the owner of an apartment building, you need to take steps to ensure your building and your tenants are as safe as possible from fire. This job includes educating your tenants about fire risks, buying the right fire equipment and making sure everything is in working order. Here's what you should do:
1. Do a fire safety walk through with new tenants
When new tenants move into the building, do a fire safety walk through with them. Show them where the emergency exits are, teach them how to work the fire extinguishers and give them a handout on safe anti-fire practices within their units.
Also, make sure they understand how to proceed out of the building in the case of a fire.
2. Schedule annual fire drills
In addition to showing your new tenants how to be safe, schedule an annual fire drill with all of your tenants. During the drill, remind your tenants of how to get safely out of a burning building – they should proceed to a fire door and feel it. If it is cool to the touch, they should continue to exit, but if it's hot, they should turn around and take an alternate route out.
If there is smoke in the halls, they should crawl under it, and if they cannot find a way to exit their unit safely, they should stay in there. While in the unit, they should open a window for air and if possible, hang a flag out the window to alert the fire fighters of their presence.
Ideally, all of your tenants should meet in the same spot outside so you can account for everyone and advise the fire fighters if you believe someone is missing.
3. Inspect the fire equipment and safety features in your building
In addition to educating your tenants, you also need to ensure your building is prepared to detect fires and offer safe paths for evacuation. Check your fire alarms on a regular basis, and make sure both they and their backup batteries work. Also, do checks of fire suppressions systems, and make sure your fire exits are clearly marked and not blocked by clutter.
4. Invest in fire extinguishers
Your apartment building should have fire extinguishers through all of its hallways, and you should also have extinguishers in potentially dangerous areas such as laundry rooms (where built-up lint can become a fire hazard) and kitchens.
Additionally, you may want to invest in other fire equipment including a first aid kit, lit exit signs or safety posters. For more information, contact a local fire equipment supplier like Fire Protection Services Pty Ltd.