Building maintenance

Building maintenance is essential to fire protection. Damaged walls and fences, and gates and windows that will not fasten properly give admission to intruders. It is advisable to operate a permit to work system if contractors are on the premises and a hot work permit system for operations such as welding which employ flames or heat.

  1. Is the building regularly inspected for damage to windows, roof and walls?
  2. Are proper fire precautions taken during repairs or alterations?
  3. Is the electrical installation periodically tested and inspected?
  4. Are defects in the electrical installation reported and recorded?
  5. Is the need for hot work carefully assessed before it is undertaken?
  6. Do you operate a hot work permit system?
  7. And is it properly monitored?

You need to ensure that contractors can demonstrate competence in fire prevention, fire safety and fire action. Whilst they are working on the premises, because they will naturally be unfamiliar with your practices and systems, contractors must be continuously supervised and the effect on the surrounding area of their working properly checked.

Maintenance: it won’t run for ever

Equipment that is used daily may be taken for granted, so maintenance is often ignored and the gradual deterioration goes unnoticed – until one day it breaks down. Poorly maintained equipment, as found in laundries for instance, is liable to cause fire. Frequent inspection and regular maintenance are the only effective remedies. And, the more equipment is used, the more frequent should be the maintenance checks.

  1. Is all machinery and equipment regularly and frequently inspected?
  2. And is it properly maintained?
  3. Do such inspections check that the machinery is kept clean?
  4. Are the bearings kept properly lubricated?
  5. Are driving belts correctly tensioned?
  6. Are defects in machinery and equipment reported at once?
  7. Are all defects remedied at once?
  8. Do you record all such maintenance checks and defects?
  9. Is machinery so arranged as to prevent congestion among machines or among machines and materials?
  10. Are drip trays provided and have other steps been taken to prevent floors and walls becoming soaked with oil?