Soon after the deadly fire struck Mumbai’s Kamala Mills compound leading to the deaths of 14 people at a rooftop bar 1Above, the police and city corporation authorities in India’s pub city Bangalore started to make a list of rooftop bars and restaurants, and served notices to those that they felt didn’t meet fire safety compliance.
However, the city was not prepared for the fire that took the lives of five employees of a bar and restaurant in the crowded Kalasipalyam area, which houses the wholesale market of the city. This fire incident took place within a couple of weeks after the Kamala mills incident. This time around, the employees were asleep within the restaurant’s premises when the fire broke out.
If you are a restaurant or a bar owner, these tragic incidents should prompt you to make your restaurant fire safety compliant and save not only your customers’ lives but also that of your employees.
Restaurants and Bars across the world need to worry about fire safety
Most Indian cities were planned and developed during the British era, and infrastructure in Bombay, Bangalore, Calcutta, and other older cities are crumbling, and newer buildings are often constructed in the midst of crumbling infrastructure. Not only do the older buildings pose risks to fire safety, but even the newer buildings also may not meet all the restaurant fire safety regulations.
Those of you who remember the Grenfell Towers fire in London that claimed the lives of 71 deaths would know that even modern constructions aren’t immune to fire hazards, and it does not matter in which country or city your restaurant or bar is located in. Across the world, there have been a number of fires in nightclubs, discotheques, restaurants, and bars, even in the most sophisticated constructions.
Your responsibility is to ensure that you have a Restaurant Fire Suppression system in place and that the safety of your customers, employees, and neighboring buildings are taken care of. In addition, to continue to operate as a business, most city-authorities now require restaurants and bars to meet restaurant fire safety regulations.
Meeting local restaurant fire safety regulations
To make sure that your business license isn’t canceled, you will need to ensure that you comply with all the restaurant fire safety regulations put in place by your local authorities, and ensure complete fire safety compliance. Before you do this, we would like to ask you, is your Restaurant Fire Suppression System in compliance with current safety norms? And we bet, you probably don’t know the answer to this question. to make sure that you meet restaurant fire safety regulations, inquire with local authorities what they expect from a business such as yours. Depending on the building your restaurant or bar is located in, fire safety compliance may differ. Speaking to local fire brigades will be necessary too, as will be ensuring that all your electrical infrastructure is up-to-date and safe. You might have to invest in fire extinguishers, safety kits, first aid, make arrangements for escape routes and fire exits, and invest in infrastructure as may be required by various licensing authorities.
Whom to contact:
• Local municipal and city corporation bodies
• Local fire safety authorities
• Electrical engineers
• Vendors of restaurant fire suppression systems
Maintaining fire safety in bars and restaurants
Whether it is a bar or a restaurant, you have the moral and legal responsibility of safeguarding your employees’ and customers’ lives. These four steps should be implemented promptly:
1. Every employee must undergo rigorous fire safety training, and regular drills must be conducted, even if it interferes with restaurant or bar operations. Make this is a fun exercise, and involve your customers during the drills as it will help them in other fire situations too.
2. Ensure kitchen safety by making sure that oil and grease do not build up over a period of time, and keep the kitchen well-ventilated, and have special smoke and fire detection units installed.
3. Always make sure that rooftop bar fire escape routes are adequate and fool-proof. It is better to be safe than sorry, and think of restaurant fire safety systems as your best friends.
4. Ensure fire safety in bars by keeping fire extinguishers ready, and making sure that nobody sleeps or rests in the bar area after work hours.Ensure they have a separate place to sleep or rest. Liquor is highly inflammable, and employees need to be always cautious when it comes to handling all kinds of liquors.
In addition, you need to follow these steps as well:
• Conduct fire safety audits regularly
• Invest in safety infrastructure such as fire extinguishers, first aid kits, etc
• Make alterations to your building if required
• If your building is rented, consult the landlord to ensure fire safety compliance
• Purchase a Restaurant Fire Suppression System that meets local restaurant fire safety regulations
• Maintain fire safety in bars by investing in restaurant fire safety systems
• Ensure rooftop bar fire escape routes and exits
• Do not allow your employees to sleep in unauthorized places after work hours
• Install smoke alarms everywhere
• Automate smoke and fire detection, and make this happen remotely
Avert restaurant fire and ensure fire safety in bars
Tragedies can easily be avoided when all the stakeholders are involved in maintaining fire safety in restaurants. Involve the building owners, fire safety authorities, electrical engineers, your employees and customers, and invest in all the infrastructure that you may need to avert fatalities and injuries. Even if you have to spend a little more than you may have imagined, automating fire safety compliance, and investing in top-notch Restaurant fire Suppression System will not only help you retain your bar or restaurant license, it will help you avert accidents and safeguard the lives of your employees, customers, and occupants of neighboring buildings.