October is fire safety awareness month. In 2020 the National Fire Protection Association estimated around 1.4 million fires in the United States, with an estimated $21.9 billion in property damage. Of those 1.4 million fires residential structure fires accounted for 27%. Living in Florida fire claims are not the most common compared to wind and flood, however, fire is by far the costliest insurance claim when it does happen. With the implementation of fire safety measures, your association can limit its fire exposure. Here are some of our best fire safety measures & tips:
1. Yearly Fire Inspections
Each local government has different rules on how often they require a fire inspection for condominiums, but it’s best to stay ahead and get one done yearly. Your local fire department will come out for free and give your association an inspection.
2. Install Life-Safety Systems
Having smoke detectors and sprinklers should be a mandatory feature in the association. While the installation of the system may be pricey the life-threatening risk of not having it is much bigger. It’s best to go above and beyond for your resident’s safety. Another great life-safety system is installing Carbon Monoxide alarms on each floor. All these systems should be checked a minimum of twice yearly to ensure they are functioning properly.
3. Make Sure Your Residents Know How to Evacuate
In the unfortunate event of a fire occurring, your residents need to be prepared on the best evacuation route and measures they can take to get to safety. A great way to incorporate all of this is to have a yearly fire drill where residents can practice evacuating and provide them with the condominium’s procedures.
4. Know What Your Insurance Covers
Before a fire ever occurs, you should know exactly what fire damage is covered under your association’s insurance policy. Condos can limit their legal damage resulting from a fire with the purchase of condo association insurance.