Virtually every type of premises is subject to fire safety legislation and in all premises the risk of fire is ever present.
As a result, there are a range of different fire safety items that are likely to be necessary whether it’s an office, hotel, factory, warehouse or other commercial or public premises you need to protect.
Statistics show most workplace fires are put out with fire extinguishers and it’s no surprise that legislation requires suitable fire-fighting appliances in premises. The number and type of extinguishers depends on the size of your premises and the risks present, but generally you will need at least one, if not more, from the following types of fire extinguisher:
- Water extinguisher: The oldest form of firefighting agent, water is still most effective where the primary risk is fires in solid materials such as wood, paper, textiles, etc.
- Water additive extinguisher: By adding a wetting agent these extinguishers increase the effectiveness and penetration of the water into burning solids, meaning smaller, lighter, easier to use extinguishers can be selected.
- Foam extinguisher: A popular choice for multiple risk areas containing flammable solids and flammable liquids, with both a cooling action and a blanketing action preventing re-ignition.
- Wet Chemical: The preferred choice for kitchens as effective on cooking oil fires, both cooling the oil and forming a soapy blanket over the oil to stop re-flash.
- Carbon Dioxide: A gaseous agent ideal for electrical equipment as non-conductive and able to penetrate enclosures. Also effective on flammable liquid fires and being clean is popular where delicate equipment may be present such as laboratories.
- ABC Dry Powder: A good all rounder for flammable solids, liquids, gases, and electrical fires. Its powerful knockdown makes it popular for vehicles, petrol stations and high risk areas, although care should be taken on using these indoors.
- Lith-ex: An aqueous solution of minerals designed specifically for the unique hazard from Lithium-ion batteries, both cooling and encapsulating the affected cells.
Fire Alarm Systems
It is important to detect a fire in its early stages and warn occupiers to allow prompt escape and timely intervention. Three distinct types of electrical fire alarm system are available:
- Commercial (BS5839-1) systems: For use in workplaces these comprise manual call points, automatic detectors and alarm sounders linked to a central control panel with both mains and battery power. Enhancements include visual devices using powerful LEDS, ideal for high noise environments or where the hearing impaired are present.
- Residential (BS5839-6) systems: From the humble battery operated smoke alarm through to radio linked mains powered systems a range of equipment is available to meet all possible needs in the home, small HMO or Holiday let
- Construction systems: Solid durable self-contained battery powered units comprising call point, alarm sounder (and beacon if desired), these systems are more reliable than gongs or horns and many have the advantage of wireless linking for larger sites as well as additional features such as first aid/accident alarms
Most importantly, don’t forget to test your alarm system weekly!
Fire Exit Signs
Signage is important to aid people in finding their way to the nearest exit and should be present at changes of direction, doorways, and final exits from a building. A range of signage is available including the high performance photoluminescent (glow in the dark) signs and a wide range of internally illuminated LED exit signs, both of which will still point people in the right direction long after a building’s power supply fails
Power cuts can happen for many reasons, not just from fire, so it’s important to have a good emergency lighting installation. Read our Emergency Lighting blog for more information on this important subject.
Fire blankets are a handy way to tackle small, contained fires involving flammable solids, liquids, and cooking oils as well as fires in clothing, so are ideal in a range of environments including kitchens, laboratories, welding workshops and many more. Find out more about fire blankets here.
Fire Safety Logbooks and document storage cabinets
It’s important in all premises, but especially residential premises, to have useful information on things such as building layout, fire strategy, risks present and vulnerable occupiers on site in a single easy to reach location. Document storage cabinets are ideal for installation in the foyers of buildings or outside entrances with a range of options available.
Legislation requires you have a suitable system of testing and maintenance for your fire safety equipment, but how do you demonstrate compliance and keep track of your testing? Fire logbooks are a handy way of keeping those important records to hand.
First Aid Kit
All workplaces must have a suitably stocked first aid kit. However, it’s not uncommon for items to be used and not replaced – plus nearly all items have an expiry date too! Why not check your first aid kit now in case it’s time to restock.
PPE & Infection control equipment
Fortunately, we look to be gaining the upper hand against the Covid-19 pandemic, however it’s likely that some of the hygiene process and precautions will remain with us for the long term. We have a range of PPE and infection control products that will ensure you maintain a good hygiene regime in your premises.
Life is precious and property and assets matter, so at Fire Depot we make it our mission to provide quality, approved fire protection equipment and to share fire safety advice and fire equipment recommendations. Visit www.firedepot.co.uk for more fire safety product information or call us on 0330 999 2233 to speak to our friendly team of experts.