Fire suppression equipment is important in any building, and it’s imperative that business owners have the proper extinguishers to keep their property and employees safe from harm. Below, we’ll be discussing what’s required in the workplace, why extinguishers are needed, and the pros and cons of the different styles.
The Requirements for Fire Extinguishers at Workplaces
All business owners must ensure that their property is fitted with the correct number of extinguishers for their layout and square footage and that they are easily accessible by anyone in the building. The extinguishers must use the appropriate suppression, which is determined by the business type. Commercial extinguishers also must be inspected regularly and certified to be in good working order.
Risk of Non-Compliance
Business owners who neglect to provide accessible, adequate extinguishers in their building are putting their property and the lives of their employees and customers at risk. Additionally, they are subject to fines for improper certification and maintenance of their fire suppression devices.
Below, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of the different types of commercial fire extinguishers:
Air-Pressurized Water Extinguishers
These extinguishers are very affordable, widely available, safe to use, and typically require little maintenance. However, they can only put out class A fires and aren’t suitable for electrical or chemicals.
CO2 or Dry Chemical Extinguishers
These devices are suitable for extinguishing electrical fires and those started by flammable liquids. They can safely extinguish class B and C fires. However, they are more expensive than air-pressurized water extinguishers and may allow the flames to reignite after they appear to be extinguished. Additionally, the chemicals and CO2 should not be inhaled.
As their name suggests, ABC extinguishers contain chemicals capable of extinguishing class A, B, and C fires. They are multi-purpose, making them suitable for most businesses. However, they are more expensive than water or CO2 extinguishers, significantly heavier, and the powder shouldn’t be inhaled.
Dry and Wet Chemical Extinguishers
These extinguishers are suitable for putting out Class K fires in commercial kitchens. They’re costly and typically require more maintenance than other extinguishers. The powder shouldn’t be inhaled, so safe use can be somewhat challenging.
Regardless of which extinguishers your business needs, having them ready for use at all times is crucial for keeping your building, employees, and customers safe. If you need help deciding what kind is appropriate for your business or want to have extinguishers installed, contact one of our friendly professionals for guidance.