Trade Fire Protection

Construction Site Extinguishers

Why are fire extinguishers required on construction sites?

Construction sites are full of potential fire risks. From hot works to heaters to flammable materials throughout the site area, construction sites have all the catalysts to start a devastating fire.

Fire extinguishers are used for two reasons. The primary purpose of a fire extinguisher is to assist escape from a fire. In other circumstances, fire extinguishers may be used to fight fires in the early stages. By using a fire extinguisher at the early stages of small and solitary fires, further damage can be prevented. 

Fires are not always the raging infernos that site owners have nightmares about. Fire extinguishers allow trained individuals to safely tackle fires at an early stage before they develop beyond control. By being in the right place and ready for use, fire extinguishers save the construction industry a lot of money and the lives of workers every year.

What fire extinguishers do you need? 

Knowing what type of fire extinguisher you need for your construction site can be difficult to determine. There are five main types of fire extinguisher including wet chemical, CO2, dry powder, foam and water.

To meet fire safety regulations, you must have the exact types of fire extinguisher to meet the fire risks of your site. This will be determined by a fire risk assessment that covers the different types of fuels on your site. The different types of fires caused by these fuels are classified as different fire classes. 

There are five fire classes: 

  • Class A Fires: include fires caused by combustible materials such as paper, fabric, wood and other flammable solids
  • Class B Fires: include fires caused by flammable liquids such as paint, turpentine or petrol among others
  • Class C Fires: caused by flammable gases including methane, butane or hydrogen among others
  • Class D Fires: include fires caused by combustible metals including potassium, aluminium or magnesium among others
  • Class F Fires: include those caused by cooking oils such as a chip-pan fire
  • Electrical Fires (E): Electricity is not a fuel, but a source of ignition, therefore it is not a class of fire. However, some extinguishers are not safe for use on live electrical equipment. 
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