Thursday, September 24, 2009

It's 10:00 - Do you know where your Fire Extinguishers are?

When you have fire extinguishers in your facility it is very important that you and your staff:
  • Know where they are
  • Know when they were last inspected
  • Know how to use them

Knowing where they are is important not just for you and your staff, but for the person that has to check them as well. I frequently find units in the same building that have five or six different inspections YEARS. It is obvious that each successive inspector did not know where all of the fire extinguishers were located. Suggestion: Draw a building floor plan and annotate the location of all of the fire protection devices:

  • Fire Extinguishers
  • Fire Alarm Pull Stations, Smoke Detectors, Rate-of-Rise Heat Detectors
  • Special Devices (Fire Door releases, Fire Curtain(s), Smoke Vent(s), Elevator Lobbies)
  • Fire Alarm Control Panel (FACP)
  • Alarm Strobes, Horns, Bells
  • Emergency Lights
  • Fire Sprinkler Heads
  • Fire Hose Cabinets

Keep it filed with your inspection records, and post copies for your staff. Other good information to keep with this would include contacts:

  • Fire Marshal
  • Fire Alarm Company
  • Fire Sprinkler Company
  • Fire Extinguisher Service Company
  • Rigging System Service Company
  • Smoke Vent System Service Company

Note the dates on the inspection tag in the picture above -- they are ambiguous (no year), and difficult to read. To help identify yearly inspections are being done on all equipment, use a different color of tag each year (red, yellow, blue, green, white, etc.) so that non-conforming tags stand-out more noticeably.

Know when and how to use a fire supression device. Get training for your staff and students. If you can't actually put-out a real fire, then do the next best thing and use a fire extinguisher training device like the BullsEye or I.T.S. Extreme from BullEx Safety (

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