If you ask a horse barn owner what their worst nightmare is, almost always the answer is a barn fire. All too often, this fear becomes a reality. According to experts, once a barn fire occurs, you have approximately 8 minutes to get your horses out before the smoke inhalation causes permanent damage. Any wood barn owner, new or old, should always have fire prevention as a top priority. An emergency plan should be put in place should a fire ever occur. The most beneficial thing a barn owner can do is follow these preventative steps to decrease the chances of a fire destroying your beautiful wood barn.
-A “No Smoking” policy should be enforced in or around your barn
-All solvents, gasoline, feed, and gasoline powered equipment should be stored away from your barn
-Lights, heat lamps, and equipment should be regularly cleaned and dusted
-Make sure all electrical cords are not frayed and in good condition
-Turn off all radios while not in your barn
-Cobwebs are extremely flammable, make sure you remove them from your barn frequently
-Place several fire extinguishers around your barn as well as a sprinkler system. Test them frequently
-Have accessible halter and lead ropes available for every horse in every stall
-Inform neighbors about the presence of horses in your barn, in case you can’t get to them should there be a fire.
-Maintain a list of emergency telephone numbers and written directions to your barn at your telephone so that everybody can call for help and provide information to emergency personnel.
A barn fire is preventable, if you take the steps to make your wood barn a safe one.