According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), the biggest triggers of fires in buildings under construction include electrical faults and combustible material exposed to heat. If you have an upcoming home renovation project in Massachusetts, it’s important that you plan for fire safety. You can also avert disasters with a fire alarm system while renovation work is underway.
The following are a few practical tips to prevent a fire while renovating your home.
- Clear the construction site of any oil-soaked fabrics as these are highly combustible, especially in warmer weather.
- Safely store any combustible supplies. Products like paints and solvents can ignite when exposed to excessive heat. Keep these substances away from sources of heat such as vehicles and furnaces.
- Maintain worksite cleanliness. This entails the safe disposal of waste materials every day. You shouldn’t keep packing materials, such as plastic bags or containers that are no longer in use on the site. Don’t burn the unwanted materials either. Also, avoid throwing old rags in a trash can or folding/piling up any oil or paint-soaked clothing.
- Identify flammable materials in use. You can ask your contractor about any flammable materials that they might have brought to the site. Request them to keep such products or substances away from the structure under renovation.
- Keep portable space heaters offsite. These are high-wattage appliances that can quickly ignite any exposed combustible material, such as flammable solvents and paints, curtains, couches, or beds. Leaving such items unattended in a house under renovation can start a fire.
- Prohibit smoking on site. There will be plenty of combustible materials, including paint and gas, at the site. Cigarette lights can ignite these substances, resulting in a fire disaster. Therefore, make sure that nobody uses cigarettes, e-cigarettes, or vaping devices in your house during renovation work.
- Set up firefighting equipment on site. Just in case a fire does break out, you should know how to fight it using a complete fire extinguishing system. Having emergency water tanks and hydrants on hand can help avert tragedy. Note that as water is a good conductor of electricity, it should never be used to quench electrical fires.
- Prepare a fire alarm procedure. Always have a ready plan that specifies the responsibilities of the people involved and the actions to be undertaken in the event of a fire. For example, the plan should indicate the person who will be calling the fire department, another who will be responsible for the evacuation, etc.
- Safely handle gas cylinders. Ensure that the people handling the gas cylinders (if any) observe relevant safety protocols, including securing the cylinders in an upright position.
- Have a hot work safety plan. Welding or soldering near combustible materials is a potential fire hazard. Ensure that flammable surfaces like wooden floors are properly protected before commencing hot-work operations. Also, eliminate all combustible materials in the building under repair.
Implementing Fire Alarm Safety During Renovations
Learning how a fire alarm works is an important part of protecting life and property against a fire tragedy during a renovation project. The system simply activates an alarm if it detects signs of fire in a building. For example, one type of fire alarm uses a heat sensor to detect fire, and you can deploy it in spaces like attics or garages. Conversely, a fire alarm system with smoke sensors warns of danger upon detecting smoke in a room.
These are a few ways in which you can prevent and detect fires while renovating your home. Besides implementing a fire safety program when upgrading your property, consider getting homeowners insurance in Wellesley, MA to avert financial loss in the event of fire damage. At CAV Insurance Agency, we have access to a wide variety of homeowners insurance markets to make sure your home has sufficient coverage at a competitive price. Contact us today on 781-237-4107 to get started.