Thai Warehouse Fire Causes Nearly $3 Million Losses

A fire in a warehouse belonging to Thai retail firm Kornchai Sahapat Co. Ltd., in the Muang district of Thailand, has caused damage worth 100 million Thai baht, roughly $2.9 million.

No casualties were reported, and local police say an electrical short circuit is to blame, reports the Bangkok Post.

Security guard Somjit Suemmek said that while outside the warehouse he heard a loud explosion from a front counter where computer sets and other electrical appliances were plugged in. Fire quickly spread to nearby cardboard boxes containing merchandise.

Damage of this scale is every warehouse operative’s worst nightmare, potentially resulting in thousands or millions of pounds of lost stock belonging to you and your clients, as well as massively disrupting ongoing business and potentially putting lives at risk.

In 2014, the Centre for Economics and Business Research found that the British economy lost £1 billion in GDP and 5,000 full-time jobs through preventable fires in commercial warehouses over a 5 year period.

Fire safety is a constant concern for warehouse owners, as high-ceilinged environments full of flammable boxes and packaging can unfortunately be conducive to the rapid spread of fire.

Top tips for warehouse fire prevention:

  • Install automatic sprinkler systems throughout the warehouse. Badly stored goods can prevent sprinkler systems working correctly
  • Implement mandatory fire extinguisher training for employees, alongside proper waste management precautions. You should have at least one water based fire extinguisher to cover 200m2 of floor space
  • If you store hazardous or flammable materials, ensure you follow codes specific to their storage requirements and guidelines
  • Regularly carry out an updated fire safety risk assessment, examining potential problem areas, how you can limit fire damage, and how you should respond to a fire. Make sure you act on any weaknesses you find, and use results to inform and train staff
  • Regularly inspect equipment, heating, electrics and warehouse vehicles such as forklift trucks
  • Ensure you have suitable fire escape routes which are accessible at all times. Exits must be clearly signposted and the route should be lit up even if there is a power failure
  • Make sure your insurance is up to date. You need to keep your insurer informed of the type of goods you store, how they are stored, the value of your goods and buildings, and more.

Talk to Neville Jones for more information.