Exploring fire extinguisher signs
Posted by David Arnold
One of the biggest selling ranges of safety signs in the UK relates to fire extinguishers. Helping to aid the quick identification of fire equipment and outlining how this equipment is operated, it is no surprise that these fire extinguisher signs sell so well. With this in mind today’s article features some of the slightly more obscure signs that are procured by only small pockets of fire professionals and knowledgeable sign installers:
Fire Point Numbering sign
- What is it? Where businesses have multiple fire points (clusters of one of more fire extinguishers) they often like to number each fire point. This sign helps them do just this.
- Where should it be installed? This should go 1.7-2m off the ground directly above the fire extinguisher(s).
- Why is it used? This helps larger premises understand and manage their fire extinguishers across a site. Often the fire log book will be used in conjunction with this, recording the fire point numbers and any remedial actions carried out against each. This helps managers see at a glance if they have any problem areas where extinguishers have been regularly used or misused. Used in conjunction with a fire log book, it also helps them see at a glance how often fire extinguishers have been serviced and replaced without having to go to the fire point itself.
Directional Fire Extinguisher Sign
- What is it? To aid equipment location, ideally all extinguishers should have the extinguisher symbol and licking flames element of this sign 1.7 to 2m off the ground, directly above the fire extinguisher. To further help location of this fire fighting equipment, directional arrows can be used to guide people from a distance to the nearest fire point.
- Where should it be installed? This is particularly useful in factories and warehouses where the fire point may be some distance away and where fire extinguishers may be partially or completely obscured from the line of vision.
Know your fire extinguishers sign
- What is it? This sign is designed to tell all those in the building what each of the fire extinguishers are and what they can and cannot be used on.
- Where should it be installed? This sign contains great information that all occupants of the building could benefit from. However, the subject matter is often only of interest in an emergency situation. With this in mind, the installer may fall into the trap of installing it next to or near the fire extinguishers themselves. This would be a mistake as the panicked individual will not have the time or the presence of mind to read all six panels to work out which extinguishers are right and available to him. Instead, a good position for this may be in a communal area or perhaps - if the installer is really keen to ensure it is installed in an area where people will actually read it - install it on the back of the cubicle toilet door!
Fire Extinguisher Servicing Record label
- What is it? It is an extinguisher’s annual servicing record. The person servicing the extinguisher will use a pen on this to update this record.
- Where should it be installed? On the side of every extinguisher.
- Why is it used? Under BS5306 fire extinguishers should be serviced annually to help ensure they operate correctly whenever they are called upon. Whilst fire protection companies in the main use these it should also be noted that organisations like councils, colleges and universities, which do their own servicing, will also be required to affix and update a self adhesive servicing label of this nature.
24/7 Fire Extinguisher Cover Sign
- What is it? This fire warning sign is used to ensure a fire point always has an available and fit for purpose fire extinguisher in position
- Where is it used? Under the same British Standard as the above, BS5306 part 3, fire extinguishers should be available for use 24/7. In line with this British Standard, fire extinguishers should be are positioned at regular intervals to ensure, if a fire breaks out, that the building’s occupants will only have to walk a short distance before a suitable extinguisher is available to them. If for some reason the extinguisher has gone missing, it could potentially put the building and indeed its occupants at far greater risk.
Hopefully using this will help ensure that 24/7 availability of extinguishers is achieved wherever possible.
Footnote: As is often the case with these articles, we have touched on rather than thoroughly explored all facets of certain British Standards and legislation. Whilst this keeps the articles relatively light and easy to read, we apologise if this information is not as comprehensive as it could be. With this in mind, please forward any relevant questions to firstname.lastname@example.org
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