Just having a fire extinguisher isn’t enough — you want to make sure that your fire extinguisher is being serviced and inspected. When was the last time you had a fire extinguisher recharge for example? Are your fire extinguishers being inspected regularly to make sure they work and are up to date? If the answer to those questions is no, it’s time to call in a fire extinguisher service to do some fire extinguisher inspections. For commercial buildings, these inspections are mandated, especially if the risk for fire is high (such as in a restaurant or other dining establishment). Fire extinguishers are an important part of fire protection and you should be aware of all the ways to protect yourself in a fire if the worst was to happen. Don’t let your fire extinguisher recharge or inspection date pass you by.
Why Are Fire Extinguishers So Important?
Fire extinguishers are one of the first lines of defense when a fire first starts. In a study that looked at over 2,000 fire incidents, portable fire extinguishers had successfully put out over 80% of the fires. On a daily basis, they could be used as many as 600 times all across the country to help a small blaze from turning into a huge disaster that could be potentially life-threatening.
Whether a fire extinguisher is located in a home, school, hotel, or other type of business, they can save both lives and property. Indeed, they’re also a positive force for the environment as well — fewer carbon emissions occur and the amount of water needed to fight the flames is also reduced if a fire extinguisher successfully puts out the flames.
What Fire Extinguisher Services Should I Be Doing Regularly?
Doing a fire extinguisher recharge can be crucial in several situations. First, if a fire extinguisher is deployed to help fight a fire, it will need to be refilled afterwards, even if the entire contents of the canister weren’t used. If they’re six and twelve years older than their manufacturing date (which you can find on the label), you should also get them recharged. And, if there were any environmental factors that might have led to a decrease in their pressure, you should consider a fire extinguisher recharge.
You also need to get your fire extinguishers inspected on a monthly basis, to make sure that they are in good working order. Your fire extinguisher inspection professionals will come and do a visual inspection — making sure everything looks right — a physical inspection, and then verify that the inspection has been done. Annual maintenance should also be done by a licensed professional.
These inspections keep you compliant with the laws, make sure you’re ready in case of a fire, keeps everyone in your building safe, and can even help with insurance costs. Though this may seem like overkill to some people, it’s better to be over-prepared than under-prepared in situations like these.
What Are Important Fire Protection Tasks to Be Doing?
Make sure that everyone knows basic fire safety procedures. Conduct fire drills. Do people know where the nearest exits are and what to do in case of emergency? Stop, drop, and roll should be drilled into many of our minds from school, but it’s never a bad idea to go over the basics.
Your building may also have a regimented fire safety plan, which could include calling the fire warden and alerting them of a fire, then safely evacuating, and which should always include calling 911.
Making sure that your fire alarms, fire extinguishers, and other early warning and prevention systems are working and up to date is also crucial. Chances are, those will be your first warnings and your first line of defense, should a fire occur, and you want them to be working.
Never be unprepared when you stay up to date with fire extinguisher and fire alarm systems. Don’t skimp on the inspections and don’t be afraid to get parts replaced, if needed. It’s always better to be safe than sorry.