What is Involved During a Fire Safety Inspection?
Regular fire inspection services are an extremely important part of any business. While you might not like the idea of a fire department coming in and inspecting your place of business, they are actually doing you a favor by ensuring that your fire detection and safety equipment are in good working order. They will also make sure that your business is as fireproof as possible. Imagine how much you stand to lose if your building ever did have a fire.
Here is an overview of some of how fire inspection services work.
National Fire Code
Inspection companies go by the National Fire Code when inspecting fire safety equipment. Every type of fire extinguisher, hose system, and sprinkler system has a standard it must meet. Every piece of equipment, including kitchen hoods and alarm systems, is expected to be properly maintained at all times.
It’s essential that you understand the codes and the standards for your municipality. They are created through a consensus process, and are updated on a regular basis. Normal revision cycles occur approximately every three years. Keeping up with these standards will make it easier to pass inspection.
When it comes to fire extinguishers, some of the things an inspector will look for include:
- Whether or not they are all in the correct place.
- If they are easily accessible.
- If regular inspections are being conducted.
- When the last inspection occurred.
- Condition of the nozzles.
- Pressure gauge indicator.
- Whether or not staff members are all trained on how to use them.
- If there is any leakage, damage, or corrosion.
Fire Alarm System
Alarms and detectors are thoroughly looked over during fire inspection services. You must have the appropriate type of detector and alarm installed in the ideal places. On top of that, the inspector may also check to see if:
- The control panel is indicating that the system is operational.
- All of the smoke detectors have been tested within the past year.
- All of the doors are accessible.
- All of the manual pull stations are unobstructed and accessible.
- The digital communicator is displaying as “normal” to the monitoring center.
- There is any damage or possible defect.
Fire Suppression Equipment
Suppression systems such as fire hydrants and sprinklers are also inspected. Here is a list of things the inspector may look for:
- If the hydrants are all visible and easily accessible.
- If the caps are placed on the hydrants properly.
- Whether or not the fire sprinkler piping and heads are in good condition.
- If there is an obstruct-free zone at least a foot and a half below the sprinkler heads.
- If there are extra sprinkler heads available in the building.
- If the sprinkler heads are free of grease, dust, rust, etc…
- Whether or not the pipes and heads have been inspected recently, and if the results of the inspection are documented.
Other Things Involved in a Fire Safety Inspection
Depending on your type of business, some of the following might also be inspected:
- Electrical components and appliances
- Hazardous materials
- Exit doors and signs
- Emergency plans
- Evacuation plans
- Heat, ventilation, and air conditioning
Now that you have some idea of what to expect with fire inspection services, you can begin to prepare by making sure your equipment and fire protection systems are up to date. If something is found problematic during the inspection, have the repairs or renovations conducted by experts.