Many times the fire marshall may order that the property owner hire a fire watch guard. Now there could be numerous reasons for this which include that the property is used to store combustible chemicals, or there are people working with open flames within the structure, like with welding equipment. Regardless of the reason, once it is ordered, you will need to hire some fire watch guards or even multiple guards. However, there is an alternative.
Understanding why the fire marshal may have ordered a fire watch guard is key. You can start by asking them, and if they say something about your sprinklers not working, you can alternatively get those fixed and not have to hire one. Even then, we lean in favor of recommending businesses that they hire a fire guard. Having one can add an extra layer of security against fires to your business.
Below we’ll look at an alternative to hiring a fire watch ordered by the fire department.
Install Fire Alarms and Sprinklers
One of the reasons why the fire department may recommend that you have a fire watch guard is that either the fire alarms and sprinklers aren’t working or don’t exist. The building safety code often requires that you have fire alarms and sprinklers. However, on buildings under construction or being renovated, these systems may not be present, in which case you need to hire a security guard for fire watch.
If your building isn’t under construction or not being renovated, we’d strongly recommend that you check all the fire alarms and sprinklers to fix ones that aren’t working. Then ask the fire department to rerun their audit. If anything that should help, do away with the recommendation or order.
A Fire Watch Guard is Worth It
Many business owners and building managers may see hiring a fire watch guard as being an added expense, especially if their sprinklers are working. However, when you consider that these professionals only cost around $30 on average but could potentially save you millions in fire damage, the extra cost certainly looks worth it.
It would help if you also kept in mind that fire alarms and sprinklers only kick in when there is a fire. Often the fire has kicked up quite a bit of momentum before the alarms sound, and by then, there is nothing much anyone can do. On the other hand, a fire watch guard can help prevent major infernos by putting out small fires even before the smoke reaches the alarm, making them worth it.
While there is always a way to get around not having to hire a fire watch guard, it is worth having one on board. In fact, we’ll go so far as to say that having a fire watch guard in your building offers peace of mind knowing that you will not have to suddenly deal with the financial stress associated with fire damaging your property and potentially injuring people inside the building.