In the dry cleaning business, your clients face many risks. One of the risks they face is due to utility services interruptions or more devastating; property damage from a fire. The use of solvents is the primary concern of dry cleaner companies. One dangerous solvent in particular is Stoddard, an older dry cleaning solutions and sometimes spot-cleaning solvent. Stoddard is highly flammable.
If your dry cleaning client experiences a fire, not only will they suffer from property damage and dry cleaner business interruption, but they will also be losing customers’ belongings. A fire is one business interruption your client will want to do everything they can to avoid.
In addition to solvent, dry cleaning shops contain fuels, ignition sources, and oxygen; all of which are elements to easily start a fire. Potential combustible materials include furniture, garments, and lint, not to mention the building itself. Ignition can be triggered by heated equipment such as a press, a frictional spark inside the solvent reclaimer cage, or even static electricity within the reclaimer.
So what can your clients do to reduce their dry cleaner business interruption exposures from a fire?
- Enforce a “no smoking” policy within the building
- Separate the drycleaning room from the rest of the building by a partition with a 2-hour fire resistance rating.
- Construct the floors and ceiling of the drycleaning room of fire-resistant material.
- Equip drycleaning rooms containing petroleum-based solvents with an emergency drainage system that directs solvent leaks and fire protection water to a safe location.
- Install an approved wet-pipe sprinkler system in the drycleaning room.
These are just a few ways that your dry cleaning clients may be able to reduce their risks. It’s important for them to remember though that the only 100% way for them to protect themselves financially should a fire disrupt their business is with Dry Cleaner Business Interruption Insurance. At IWA, we offer the FabriCare Advantage, which includes business interruption, workers comp, and more. Please contact us today for more information at (855) 764-7406.