You already know the importance of having fire protection systems at your place of business. Not only are they required, but they’re also vital for keeping buildings as well as the occupants and property within them safe. But having the systems isn’t enough. It’s also essential to have a program for ITM: the inspection, testing, and maintenance of those systems.
To protect your business, the systems have to be in working order. This can only be assured by having them inspected and tested regularly and performing any necessary maintenance. Your fire codes will dictate a schedule of when the different components must be reviewed. However, these standards are the minimum that must be adhered to for complying with regulations, not necessarily what’s optimum.
The question is whether you just want to comply with regulations or you want to protect your investment and people in the best manner possible. This may require testing certain parts of the system on a more regular basis. It may also mean that you need to invest in a more advanced fire protection system than the one you already have in place.
Some facilities are more prone to danger from fires than others, either due to the nature of the business, the building, the equipment, or its operational history. If this is the case, then both an improved system as well as a more frequent ITM program may be necessary.
In terms of who should perform the ITM, you have options. It is possible to have someone working at your company take on this role. In that case, he or she will need to be properly trained. That person will also need to be approved in that role by the “authority having jurisdiction” which may be the local fire department, your insurance company, or others.
It’s also possible to outsource this role, something many businesses choose to do. This can be advantageous as it does not take up employee time and also ensures that the person in charge of ITM is extremely knowledgeable in the area, which can help give you peace of mind that it is being done correctly. They will also be aware of any advances in technology that would be useful for your facility.
If you’re not sure how your fire protection system and ITM program measures up, it may be worth having a consultant come in to check it out. Something so critical is not an area that you want to leave to guesswork.