Fire extinguisher servicing Skipton
So, what are the regulations for local business owner concerning fire extinguishers?
All fire regulations in England and Wales for non-domestic facilities is covered by the Regulatory Reform (Fire Safety) Order 2005 (RRO), which states that portable fire extinguishers, must be supplied where there is any risk of fire.
The exact requirement for extinguishers should be determined from a business fire-risk assessment which is a legal requirement for any company with five or more employees.
The provision and also maintenance of fire extinguishers is also covered by BS5306, which provides guidelines regarding which extinguishers to use where as well as on what kind of fire.
Fire / extinguisher classifications
Materials considered to be different types of fuel can be classified as the following classes:
A – flammable carbon-based solids eg paper, wood, plastic, upholstery and sugar.
B – combustible fluids eg paraffin, petrol, diesel or oil (not cooking oil).
C – combustible gases, eg butane, lp or methane.
D – burning metals, eg aluminium, lithium or magnesium.
E- This differs slightly as this classification covers fires involving electricity. However, electricity is not a fuel rather a source of ignition.
F – Cooking fats and oils.
It is vital that the right extinguisher used on the right type of fuel. Using the wrong extinguisher can be extremely dangerous and exacerbate a fire rather than extinguish it. Below are examples of which extinguisher could be used with which fuel:
A – water, water mist, foam, powder, wet chemical.
B – foam, dry powder, CO2
C- dry powder.
D – specialist dry powder.
E – carbon dioxide, Powder
F – wet chemical.
Electrical fires are often a cause of confusion. Foam extinguishers people often think can be used however, they are safe to use in the proximity of electricity – not on it! Foam is a spray meaning water cannot travel back to the user. Whereas water is a jet and electric can travel up a solid jet back to the user. So, foam can be used near electric however if the foam pools at your feet then electricity can travel to the user. Just use CO or Powder and ideally CO. Powder extinguishers cause a heck of a mess.
How many fire extinguishers do I require?
The regulations mention that a minimum of two Class A fire extinguishers on every floor of a building are needed, unless the properties are really small, in which case one may be acceptable. 3- or six-litre foam, or nine-litre water, are one of the most often specified. Our personal preference is a 9 litre water and a 2kg CO (This would cover solids, liquids and electrical)
Most businesses should have at least 2kg CO extinguishers and 5kg if there is three-phase electrical.
Where to put them.
Extinguishers should be on each floor (you should not have to travel storeys to find one) Ideally near exits and possibly near fire alarm call points and no more than 30 metres apart.
Fire extinguisher servicing Skipton
Extinguishers need to be kept in good working order. The business must carry out visual checks every month (e.g. the pin is in, the pressure is correct, it’s mounted at the right height and has the correct sign above it)
Extinguishers must be serviced (by a competent person) every 12 months. A service involves a 30 point check. One check is to weigh the extinguisher (to ensure it is not losing contents) and record the eight on the service label. Extended services (involving refills and o ring changes) vary in frequency depending on the type of extinguisher. UK fire extinguisher policies advise that extinguishers need an extended service every 5 years. CO2 extinguishers do not but must be changed every ten years, unless they are harmed or have been discharged. No extinguisher must be in place after it is 20 years old.