When you are owning a business, you know how catastrophic a fire outbreak can be. Even a small outbreak can cause your business operations to be delayed or worse stopped for days, leading to a loss in revenue. That’s why as a business owner it’s up to you to conduct a risk assessment of your commercial property and place the most appropriate fire extinguishers in your office. By doing this you will be providing a secure environment for your employees to work in.
Now, you may be thinking, that it’s not that difficult and you can go online, or hire your local fire protection company to purchase some fire extinguishers and put them in place- it’s not that simple. Here’s what you should know, not all fire extinguishers are created equal, as they are made to douse fires formed out of different materials. Consider this matter as it is highly important that you should know what type of fire extinguisher will be ideal for your property and in this blog post we will be discussing that in length.
Before choosing a fire extinguisher, the most important aspect that you should look into is what type of fire outbreak is most likely to happen at your workplace. If you don’t know, you should be carrying out a risk assessment of your office by professionals. After the assessment is carried out, the next step would be to choose a type of fire extinguisher based on the evaluation. There will be labels on each type of fire extinguisher and each label would mean that they can be used to put out different types of fires.
Class A: This type of fire extinguisher can be used to extinguish outbreaks from solid combustibles such as paper, cloth, rubber, plastic and wood- the fires that come under the Class A category. Air-pressurised with water they produce a foam (sometimes detergents are also added to the mixture) to smother and cool off the flames.
Class B: Outbreaks from flammable liquids such as oil, gasoline and petroleum can be doused off by this category of fire extinguishers. If you own a home improvement store or run a gas station then you will benefit from investing in Class B fire extinguishers. The materials that are used for this type of fire extinguisher are CO2, dry powder or foam.
Class C:Electrical equipment such as wiring, fuse boxes, machines and control panels- if you’re in the electrical supplies business, then you should be investing in Class C type of fire extinguishers. You can also use CO2 fire extinguishers as well.
Class D:Any fire that involves metal and metal shavings or flakes of sodium, potassium, magnesium, and combustible powders is classified as Class D fire. Laboratories would reap the most benefits from keeping Class D fire extinguishers at their premises. Containing a special powder these fire fighting devices are highly effective on lithium metal fires too.
Class K:Fires fueled by fats, oils, and grease, generally kitchen combustible are known as Class K fires. They are best suited for home catering businesses and restaurants. The smothering agents used in these extinguisher variants range from a fine mist in wet chemical versions to potassium bicarbonate in dry chemical extinguishers. The dry and wet chemicals help to combat the high temperature and flames of combustibles.
When you choose an extinguisher for your business premises, it’s important to keep room size in mind and the rate at which a fire could spread throughout the area. Although 10-pound fire extinguishers are ideal for commercial spaces, warehouses and workshops where equipment is stored, you would also want to consider the nature of the equipment too. For a typical office space, a lighter, 5-pound variant should be enough, whereas there are also 2-pound extinguishers available on the market for trucks and cars. You should factor in the physical capabilities of the people working in your office. A large extinguisher will contain more firefighting agents, making them heavier to handle.
When you are looking for fire extinguishers, here’s a checklist that can help you choose the best from the lot.
It should have a decent discharge rate and discharge time.
It should be refillable.
The extinguishers should be multi-purpose.
Easy to use
If you are living in Qatar and are looking for professional fire extinguisher suppliers, Cease Fire Solutions is a reputable fire protection company that you can get in touch with. We are overseas fire extinguisher suppliers as well.