Focus: Fire-Life Safety / Column

Regulations, Codes & Standards Q&A: Portable fire extinguishers

By Brad Keyes / Special to Healthcare Facilities Today
October 24, 2018

Q: In regards to portable fire extinguishers, I have a fully sprinkled building but my room that my hot water heaters are in are on the outside of the building. My furthest hot water room is more than 75 feet from the closet fire extinguisher. I looked in the Life Safety Code and have not found any reference on this. Do I need to place a fire extinguisher in this room?

A: Yes, you do… Section 9.7.4.1 of the 2012 LSC requires compliance with NFPA 10. According to chapter 6 of NFPA 10-2010, the installation of portable fire extinguishers is based on the classification of the extinguisher, the capacity of the extinguisher, and the level of hazard the extinguisher is expected to address.

For Class A extinguishers, the maximum travel distance to an extinguisher is 75 feet. For Class B extinguishers, the maximum travel distance is either 30 feet or 50 feet, depending on the capacity of the extinguisher and the expected level of hazard. For Class C extinguishers, the fire is started by electrical current, but the material that burns is either a Class A material or a Class B material, so you space the extinguishers on the class A or Class B requirements. For a Class K extinguisher, the maximum travel distance is 30 feet.  

You need to install an extinguisher to be within the maximum travel distance limits.

Brad Keyes, CHSP, is the owner of KEYES Life Safety Compliance, and his expertise is in the management of the Life Safety Program, including the Environment of Care and Emergency Management programs.

 

 

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