en-Gauge Fire and Life Safety Blog

Uninspected Fire Extinguishers Can Be a Matter of Life or Death

Posted by Brendan McSheffrey on 5/24/11 11:29 AM

en-Gauge is dedicated to improving life safety, and for years we have been discussing the dangers related to uninspected and empty, missing and blocked fire extinguishers.  Still, it never fails to distress us when we learn about a situation where uninspected fire extinguishers are a contributing factor to the loss of life.  

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Topics: Fire Extinguisher Inspections, Fire Extinguisher, Annual Inspection, Fire Extinguisher Inspection, Uninspected Fire Extinguishers, Fire Extinguisher Monitoring, 30 Day Fire Extinguisher Inspection, NFPA 10 Code Compliance, Apartment, NFPA 10, Empty Fire Extinguisher, Fire Fatality, Depressurized Fire Extinguisher

Deadly School Fire Soon Forgotten - Inspections Critical to Safety

Posted by Brendan McSheffrey on 2/3/11 10:26 AM

Unfortunately, the desire for fun and games has trumped the memory of a deadly fire at Nebraska Weslyan campus.  4 short years after a 19 year old student was killed in a fraternity fire at Weslyan, fire safety has taken a back seat to good times.  Acoording to the Lincoln Journal Star:

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Topics: Fire Extinguisher Inspections, Fire Extinguisher Vandalism, Fire Extinguisher, Codes and Standards, Annual Inspection, Fire Extinguisher Inspection, Campus Fire and Security, 30 Day Fire Extinguisher Inspection, Fire Fatality, Fire Marshals, Depressurized Fire Extinguisher

Fire Extinguisher Inspections Not Enough for National Hotel Chain

Posted by Brendan McSheffrey on 1/4/11 9:45 AM

This past week I stayed in Miami in a boutique size, big chain hotel.  My stay at the hotel was terrific.  Helpful and friendly staff, clean rooms and well kept facilities made my stay very pleasant,  I would gladly stay there again.   Even in this well run hotel, however,  the fire extinguisher outside my room was empty.

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Topics: Fire Extinguisher Inspections, OSHA 1910, Fire Extinguisher, Codes and Standards, Annual Inspection, Fire Extinguisher Inspection, Compliance, Electronic Monitoring Fire Extinguisher, Hotel and Hospitality, Fire Extinguisher Monitoring, 30 Day Fire Extinguisher Inspection, NFPA 10 Code Compliance, NFPA 10, ABC Fire Extinguisher, Empty Fire Extinguisher, Depressurized Fire Extinguisher

Depressurized Fire Extinguishers - Reason #3 30-day Fire Extinguisher Inspections Are Not Sufficient

Posted by Brendan McSheffrey on 12/10/10 7:56 AM

A third major concern that businesses must be aware of is empty or depressurized extinguishers.  This is especially concerning, because the extinguisher is available and accessible, but when the user tries to fight the fire, the fire extinguisher does not function properly.  A non-pressurized fire extinguisher is a code violation and an example of the type of concern the 30-day fire extinguisher inspection is meant to address.  Unfortunately, it is a concern that is all to common as the 30-day fire extinguisher inspection leaves large windows of vulnerability (if they are performed at all).


As with missing and blocked fire extinguishers, it is easy to find depressurized (either through previous discharge or a slow leak) fire extinguishers in buildings.  Here are some examples of depressurized or empty fire extinguishers I"ve found in the last few months:


Depressurized or Empty Fire Extinguishers


Sorry about the focus on this one, I was just getting used to my new iPhone


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Empty or depressurized fire extinguishers are a serious life safety risk.  They are meant to be identified and addressed during the monthy, 30-day fire extinguisher inspections. Unfortunately, only a small fraction of these inspections are actually performed and that puts lives at risk.  The 30 day window between inspections also is a substantial concern.  A much more effective method for complying with NFPA 10 is electronic monitoring of extinguishers which keeps track of the pressure in your extinguishers 24 X 7 X 365. 

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Topics: Fire Extinguisher Inspections, Fire Extinguisher, Codes and Standards, Annual Inspection, Equipment, Fire Extinguisher Inspection, Compliance, Uninspected Fire Extinguishers, Electronic Monitoring Fire Extinguisher, Non-functional Fire Extinguisher, Fire Extinguisher Monitoring, 30 Day Fire Extinguisher Inspection, NFPA 10 Code Compliance, NFPA 10, Empty Fire Extinguisher, Pressure Gauge, Electronic Monitoring, Depressurized Fire Extinguisher