Irish Fire Extinguisher Regulations and what you need to know!March 10, 2017
In August 2015, the Irish standards for fire extinguisher regulations was reviewed. So what does that mean for you as an Irish business owner who wants to fully comply with the current Irish Fire Extinguisher Regulations to ensure the safety of your customers and staff.
The most important change is the frequency you need to test discharge and refill fire extinguishers.
Here is the law: “Every fire extinguisher shall be tested by discharge every 3 years from the date of commissioning or 4 years from the date of manufacture of the extinguisher, whichever comes first, and subsequently every 3 years from the last date of discharge.”
So what does that mean in operational terms, well you need to make sure that each fire extinguisher on your premises is getting tested at least once in a 3 year period! But there is more…
“One third of all fire extinguishers shall be test discharged each year, so that at the end of the 3rd year, 100% of the extinguishers will have been tested by discharged.”
You, as a business owner or as an operational manager, need to make sure that 33% of the fire extinguishers on your premises are being tested annually. If you have 30 fire extinguishers, then 10 of them need to be test discharged each year.
Can I Do It Myself?
No! The law states “The test discharge shall be carried out by a competent person according to the requirements of this clause. This shall be carried out around the time of the annual maintenance as part of the maintenance programme.”
And Who Is A Competent Person?
We are at AISM Services. We have been in the business of fire safety for over 30 years and our engineers are experts in the field and our products comply with all up-to-date legislation so that you, our valued customer can rest easy knowing that you are fully compliant.
Keep reading as there are a few more important things to note!
“Any water, foam, wet chemical, CO2 or dry powder chemical extinguishers still in service, manufactured 10 years before the date of maintenance, shall be brought to the attention of the responsible person as they are no longer compliant with current standards.”
So you need to replace any fire extinguishers that are 10 years old! And you need to let your Fire Safety Engineer know.
Do All Your Fire Extinguishers Have The Correct Pressure Release System?
“All types and sizes of fire extinguishers must be fitted with a suitably sized pressure release device. Any extinguishers that do not have a pressure release device must be replaced as they no longer comply with current standards.”
If not you need to replace them, so why not get us to do a Fire Safety Survey of your premises.
What about the height that fire extinguishers are placed on a wall or support?
“Any fire extinguisher weighing less than 4kg should be hung at a maximum height of 1.5m from the floor and any extinguisher weighing above 4kg should be hung at a maximum handle height of 1m from the floor. This is for manual handling issues.”
Are There Places That A Fire Extinguisher Should Not Be Mounted?
Extinguishers are not to be mounted near any heat source including radiators, central heating boilers or heating appliances.
Keeping Your Records Up-to-date!
“Relevant details shall be filled in the service label of the fire extinguisher and the fire safety register by those responsible for doing so. These documents are a requirement of this standard and must be in place. A fire safety register, a certificate of inspection, maintenance and a maintenance report from a competent person along with a service label must be provided to document all fire extinguishers.”
If you get AISM Services to do your Fire Safety Equipment and Fire Alarm maintenance, we will make sure that this is all done for you and always up-to-date. We provide simple peace of mind.
But (there is always a but)!
It is the responsibility of the designated person on site to ensure that the visual inspections of fire extinguishers are completed at intervals of no greater than 1 month and documented in the fire register.
So you or one of your staff need to check once a month that your fire extinguishers are in the right places, standing upright, not being used as door stoppers and are looking healthy and ready for use.
Remember this is not just about complying with the law. This is about your safety and the safety of your staff and customers. These regulations save lives!