In my experience as a commercial property manager for some time, I find that fire safety equipment along with proper fire engineering as a whole is a big investment on the asset column and yet is rarely ever used. This is excellent of course as nobody wants to will it to fire just to utilize them!
But it also doesn’t hurt to be aware of proper maintenance of such equipment and investments in order to keep them in working order for an extended period of time. Also, maintaining your establishment’s fire safety measures means that you are in compliance with the Fire Safety Order (FSO) ratified in 2006. Aside from this, you want the safety of your work equipment, work area and most importantly the employees and guests in the are in check at all times.
First off, make sure that you buy your fire safety equipment with a warranty from reputable dealers and manufacturers. My experience in this line of work has told me that you can always trust what these companies say – if they say that a certain fire extinguisher has a shelf life of one year, they are being honest about it plus time allowance on the answer they gave you. Make a schedule on your annual planner as to when you will next consult with your fire safety supplier to make sure you are always a few steps ahead of any possible danger. Do this one thing religiously, and you will find that you’ll save a lot of future costs.
The next best thing to do is to consult with your local fire station as to what types of equipment will fit well with the way your building or house in terms of fire engineering. For instance, the use of intumescent material on sensitive areas around the vicinity is highly prone to high amounts of moisture. Inumescent material is basically a substance that expands when exposed to heat, thereby preventing the spread of fire and is usually installed in pipes, creaks and certain areas inside the house. If your local fire station tells you that you have a high humidity area, you may need to replace your intumescent material more often than other areas.
For fire extinguishers, take note that a refilling service is available for many of these products. Whether you used them or not, an annual change is most ideal in order to ensure maximum output. A regular fire drill for your office also makes sure your fire alarms are working. You can also conduct a test with your local fire station if they receive your area’s signal loud and clear.
Once in a while, test your fire exits and replace any faded fire safety signs. Lastly and while this may be a bit pricey especially if you haven’t done this before, consulting with fire engineering experts is also a must. They can tell you whether your fire safety equipment are operating optimally and what other safety equipment your home or establishment can us.