Philadelphia offers a wide variety of restaurants, from chain restaurants that are found at many locations — including fast-food restaurants — to small, family-owned restaurants that limit business to a single location.
No matter the type, however, all Philadelphia restaurants have one thing in common. They are each exposed to fire risk while preparing food and serving large numbers of customers.
According to FEMA statistics (link to article – https://www.usfa.fema.gov/data/statistics/snapshot_restaurant.html) between 2011 and 2013 restaurant fires accounted for about 6 percent of all nonresidential building fires reported to fire departments each year. These fires resulted in an average of less than one fatality per 1,000 fires, 11 injuries per 1,000 fires, and $23,000 in loss per fire.
Here are 12 things restaurants in Philadelphia can do to help reduce the risk of a fire breaking out.
- Make sure all grease filters are in place and in good condition.
- Have a filter replacement service or multiple filters to replace dirty ones regularly.
- Ensure that access panels are installed at regular intervals on the duct work.
- There should be enough access panels to allow proper cleaning and inspection of the entire system.
- Make sure all changes in direction of the ductwork are accessible.
- All outside ductwork should be included in a regular cleaning schedule.
- There should be adequate access to the facility roof and fan termination.
- Be sure that you have an illustration of the entire system and ductwork paths.
- Place the illustration in a readily accessible location should it be needed by fire authority.
- Employ a qualified and certified contractor to inspect and/or clean the exhaust system.
- Check on the effectiveness of a contractor’s service by removing the filters and opening access panels to inspect for cleanliness.
- Ask your contractor for before and after photos/videos of the work performed.