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If you don't deal with smoking in the workplace, you could face a Johannesburg CBD fire disaster

by , 20 May 2014
Yesterday, a fire left five shops in the CDB of Johannesburg gutted. Although the cause is unknown, but what if it was a stray cigarette that's to blame for this devastation.

You see, if just one employee working in one of those shops threw their cigarette away in the wrong place, they could be responsible for the whole fire.

Now imagine it happened to you because one of your employees took a smoke break. Could you do anything to prevent it?

Read on to discover what you should do to ensure you don't have a 'Johannesburg CBD fire' situation at your work.

Newsflash! You don't have to allow your employees smoke breaks...

How to deal with smoking in the workplace

The Health and Safety Advisor says you can actually ban smoking in the workplace if you want to. It's your choice to include that as part of your smoking policy at work. But if you do want to provide a designated area, there are certain rules you need to follow.
The most important of these is to have proper smoking signs up. These must tell employees and visitor where they can and can't smoke. 
But what other rules around smoking at work should you follow?
Do your employees know about the different fire equipment?

Three smoking in the workplace regulations you should follow

1. You must only allow smoking in the area you've set as the designated smoking area;
2. Make sure you display a sign in the area. It must say it's a designated outdoor smoking area and the law doesn't allow anyone under the age of 18 in the smoking area. (Note:  You can have more than one designated outdoor smoking area.)
3. You must clearly mark all outdoor area designated for smoking with signs and provide ash trays and bins. 
Always enforce the rules around your designated smoking areas in your workplace. These rules are there to help prevent workplace injuries such as burns and lung problems for those who don't smoke, as well as keep your company from burning down. They may also help you avoid using your fire evacuation procedure. 
So if you don't want to face a massive fire like the one in Johannesburg CBD, follow these rules to manage smoking in your workplace.

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