Fire extinguishers are key components in your company as they make a big difference between life and death in case of fire. Readily accessible extinguishers may allow for a rapid intervention to minimize the adverse effects of a fire on the health of employees and limit the loss of property and production shutdowns of the affected companies. That is the reason why a rigorous control over them is crucial. To ensure employees’ safety in the event of a fire, an annual inspection of the fire extinguishers is recommended, as well as the training of the employees on risk analysis requirements so they may take ownership of the steps and apply them on a daily basis.
First, it is necessary to perform a fire extinguisher inspection annually, and proceed to monthly verifications. In addition to performing a visual inspection at least once a year, it is imperative to turn the extinguishers upside down in order to fluff the powder inside. Furthermore, the contracted maintenance company will verify that the extinguisher’s outer shell is not damaged, which could determine if hydrostatic testing is required.
This test is used to prove soundness and resistance to leakage of hoses and pipes under internal water pressure.
Training of workers
Second, you are responsible for informing the company’s workers so that everyone performs summary analyses throughout the year.
Here is a list of the steps to provide to your employees:
- Keep a record, including each inspection carried out as well as the list of elements verified or to be verified;
- At all times, ensure the access to extinguishers is not obstructed and easily accessible;
- Make sure the extinguisher is in good working condition. More specifically, that all functioning parts are in place and the cylinder is not damaged;
- Shakethe extinguisher to make sure the chemical powder inside doesn’t harden.
To ensure the proper operation of extinguishers, perform preventive maintenance every six years for dry chemical extinguishers and every five years for water, K-type and CO2 extinguishers. For more information on the service life of extinguishers, visit our page on Fire Protection Services and Solutions.
Remember that fire extinguishers should be replaced after each use, but could also be recharged by professionals who will test and inspect it beforehand.
To rely on an inspection is to ensure the quality of safety supervision within your organization. For more information on the necessary procedures to prevent fire, visit our page on Fire Protection Services and Solutions.
Contact us today for more information or to schedule an inspection.