Portable fire extinguishers are often times our first line of defense against small fires and chances are you aren’t too far from one right now. Like any lifesaving equipment you want to ensure that it is operable at all times so it will work when you need it most.
The NFPA, National Fire Protection Association, lists the standard on the installation or portable fire extinguishers requirements that help ensure your extinguisher is ready.
Fire extinguishers need to have an external maintenance examination conducted on a yearly basis, at the time of hydrostatic test, or when specifically indicated by an inspection discrepancy. Extinguishers need to have an internal examination conducted at anywhere from 1-6 year intervals depending on the type of extinguisher. Extinguishers that are on catwalks or other areas that get a lot of rain, wind or sea air may need inspections done more often than those that are interior extinguishers. Don’t forget about the CO2 extinguishers that need a conductivity test on the hose assembly done annually to ensure a working condition.
For more information from the National Fire Protection Association, click here.
A properly working extinguisher could save a life, maybe even yours or your staffs. Everyone should know how to perform fire extinguisher inspections and they should be completed on a monthly basis, as well as the annual inspection.