The Florida State Fire Marshall has requirements that have to be met when it comes to fire extinguishers. Fire safety is one of the utmost priorities in every part of our lives. There are dozens of different solutions for fire safety and firefighting on the market. However, it is crucial to choose the one that not just suits your budget or idea of a perfect fire-fighting tool but also is certified efficient for the time of need. Generally, when it comes to firefighting, the first minutes are the most essential ones.
Florida Fire Marshal Requirements for Fire Extinguishers
Any fire extinguisher that hangs on the wall or stands on the shelf across Florida businesses must align with State Fire Marshal requirements. The majority of these requirements are adopted by state Fire Marshals from National Fire Protection Association standards. These include:
- Size and weight of the extinguisher.
- Composition of extinguishing agent.
- Pressure levels.
- Materials for body, hoses, and nozzles.
- Other parts of a fire extinguisher or system.
Every fire extinguisher or firefighting system must comply with these standards on top of being tested at one of the laboratories recognized by the State Fire Marshal. Some of these laboratories are Underwriters Laboratories, Inc., and Factory Mutual Laboratories, and any other laboratory licensed under Rule: 69A-21.402 of Florida Administrative Code.
Types of Fire extinguishers forbidden for usage by Florida Fire Marshal
The Fire extinguishing agents are divided into 5 classes (A, B, C, D, and K) depending on their firefighting specifications and the substance they use for fire-fighting purposes. The cause of the fire can vary from the ignition of paper or cloth to burning electric cords or even metals. Therefore, there are many variants of fire-fighting tools. Each of them is designed to ensure the highest efficiency of extinguishing but some options are bad for people’s health. That is why some extinguishing agents are excluded from use per the regulations of Florida Fire Marshals. Here is the list of prohibited types of extinguishing agents according to Rule 633.083 of Florida Statutes:
- Carbon tetrachloride.
- Dibromo difluoromethane (commonly known as Halon 1202).
- Azeotropic chloromethane.
- 1,2 dibromo-2-chloro-1, 1,2 trifluoroethane.
- 1,2 dibromo-2, 2-difluoroethane.
- Methyl bromide.
- Ethylene dibromide.
- Hydrogen bromide.
- Methylene bromide.
Fire Marshal Extinguisher Inspection and Maintenance Requirements
A crucial part of fire protection is making sure that your extinguishers will be ready to serve you when you need them. Therefore, every type of fire extinguisher or fire system has its own service time frames which are regulated by the State Fire Marshal. According to the Rule 69A-21.237 of Florida Administrative Code, every fire extinguisher or system has to be serviced at least once a year. Depending on the type of extinguisher it may require an internal maintenance at intervals of 3, 5, 6 or 12 years.
Florida Fire Marshal Requirements to Standard Service Tags
So, a service tag on a fire extinguisher or extinguishing system is the definitive mark of its quality. Every time the extinguisher goes through service it receives a new tag. Such tags testify that the fire extinguisher complies with State Fire Marshal requirements and all maintaining procedures were done according to the standards of Florida state law. In other words, this tag means that you can rely on the fire extinguisher or system and be sure that in case of an emergency it will work properly. According to the Rule 69A-21.240 of Florida Administrative Code, such tags should contain:
- Name of the person who provided servicing of the extinguisher.
- Permit number of the same person which indicates that services provided align with standards of Fire Marshal Requirements.
Appropriate Permit for Servicing Fire Extinguishers
The State Fire Marshals in Florida have the authority to give a permit to persons for servicing and maintenance of fire extinguishers and fire systems in Florida. Such a person must pass specific training according to the National Fire Prevention Agency standards. Then they can apply for a license. Rule 633.061 of Florida Statutes distinguishes 4 types of licenses depending on the work allowed with extinguishers:
- Class A license allows servicing, recharging, repairing, installing, or inspecting all types of fire extinguishers and to conduct hydrostatic tests on all types of fire extinguishers.
- Class B license allows servicing, recharging, repairing, installing, or inspecting all types of fire extinguishers, including recharging carbon dioxide units, and conducting hydrostatic tests on all types of fire extinguishers, except carbon dioxide units.
- Class C license allows servicing, recharging, repairing, installing, or inspecting all types of fire extinguishers, except recharging carbon dioxide units and conducting hydrostatic tests on all types of fire extinguishers, except carbon dioxide units.
- Class D license allows servicing, recharging, repairing, hydro testing, installing, or inspecting all types of pre-engineered fire extinguishing systems.
Florida State Fire Marshals provide strict regulations regarding the standards for extinguishers. However, these regulations serve as a safeguard for those who take fire safety in all seriousness. The accessibility and functionality of fire-fighting equipment hold not just the safety of your property or budget. It may be a life-or-death matter. Therefore, never neglect these regulations to keep your property safe.
The State Of Florida Fire Marshall website is https://www.myfloridacfo.com/division/sfm/
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