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Major Causes of Fire Damage in the Workplace

Nov 23, 2020
Major Causes of Fire Damage in the Workplace

Even though a fire is not the most frequent type of accident at the workplace here in Ireland, if you manage commercial property or own a business, fire protection is one of your primary concerns as it can cause deaths and severe injuries. The best way to defend your business against possible fire is to understand and reduce your risks. 

So, what are the top causes of fire damage in the workplace?


Kitchen/Cooking Equipment

For many years cooking fires stays at the top of non-residential fires list and only one-third of them are cooking related. Most of the time, a fire starts as a result of a human error and kitchen appliances’ malfunctioning.

HVAC Malfunction

HVAC system malfunction fires can take up as much as about 9% of fires. The HVAC system includes not only central heating, but also space heaters, water heaters, and other appliances.

Electrical Malfunction

According to the statistics, about 7% of fires are caused by an electrical system malfunction. Every modern workplace features a number of potential sources of this type of fire. For the most part, these situations happen because of the questionable wiring, broken cables or a poorly wired plug.  

Flammable Materials

In practically every workplace there is a wide range of materials that can ignite or even explode. Together with the obviously dangerous materials, such as petrol or gas, some other common mundane things could easily provoke a fire such as paper and packaging materials.


There is no way to avoid accidental fires, but there is a way to stop the ignorance. A surprisingly large amount of fires at the workplace are caused by simply ignoring the risk or not following safe practices.

Negligence should always be challenged whether it is leaving a waffle maker unattended, misusing chemicals or forgetting to maintain and service your fire alarm system on time. Thus, training your employees about safety can actually become a very effective fire protection solution.


So, what steps are necessary to take in order to avoid these kinds of fire emergencies?


Correct Fire Alarm System Installation

Most commercial building fires could have been avoided if a proper fire alarm system had been installed timely. An effective fire protection system for commercial buildings includes the following elements: detection, control and extinguishing.

Regular Servicing

All the fire protection equipment together with fire alarm systems in the premises needs to go through regular servicing on a regular basis. Get a professional fire safety assessment to check your wiring, electrical and lighting equipment, heating systems, your fire alarm system and extinguishers.

Proper Maintenance

Fire protection equipment should be appropriately and regularly maintained by a certified professional who can service any fire alarm to industry standards and ensure the company is conforming to regulations. 

Proper maintenance helps to reduce the risks of fires caused by poorly repaired, old, dirty, or unmaintained and defective equipment. Regular maintenance checks help to fix any problems quickly and just in time.


Fire is among the most dangerous accidents that can happen in the workplace. The consequences of fires may be extremely expensive for businesses as the fire damages property and stock, but most importantly, it can cause deaths.

Some of the major causes of fire, such as electrical malfunction, HVAC malfunction, and ignorance in terms of conforming to safety practices can be easily avoided by having a modern fire alarm system installed.

It is also crucial to have your fire protection equipment, such as heat alarm, smoke and heat detectors, fire extinguishers and emergency lighting maintained and serviced by a reliable professional at a certain frequency.

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