Frequently Asked Questions

There are two major types of fire alarms: ionization fire alarms and photoelectric fire alarms. Ionization fire alarms detect flaming, fast moving fires – curtain fires, trash can fires, etc. Photoelectric fire alarms are best for smoky, smoldering fires, such as electrical fires that start out behind walls. There are also dual sensor fire alarms which, naturally, combine both types into one. To maximize your fire protection, you should install both types (or a combination of the two) to make sure you are completely covered.

In short, yes. Fire sprinkler systems are great for putting out fires after they start, but they only come on once the fire has reached a certain temperature, at which point it will have already done damage. Fire alarm systems, particularly smoke detectors, round out your fire protection because they detect smoke and other gases before the flames start, giving you extra time to escape the building. They can also automatically alert the fire department.

When properly maintained, your fire alarms should last around 10 – 12 years. After this, you should start thinking about replacing the alarms in your home or building, even if they seem to be working fine – you don’t want to take any chances when it comes to the safety of your employees or family. Plus, replacing fire alarms is fairly inexpensive.

Yes. OSHA standards require that any workplace with fire extinguishers available for employee use must also provide an educational program for employees to familiarize themselves with the basics of using a fire extinguisher and the hazards associated with it.

Monthly inspection by the owner of the fire extinguisher

Annual professional fire extinguisher inspection

Internal (six-year) fire extinguisher maintenance (also referred to as tear down)

Hydrostatic testing every 12 years (five years for vehicle-mounted and some others)

Class K fire extinguishers use a special process called saponification to put out fires caused by fats and oils by basically turning them into soap.

Whatever you do, make sure you never, ever put water on a flaming pan of oil. When water hits the pan, it sinks and vaporizes almost instantly, pushing the fiery oil up in a massive plume of flame.

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), buildings with a working fire sprinkler system see an average property loss and risk of death per fire that is 50 to 66 percentlower than buildings without sprinkler systems. Broken down by industry, civilian deaths in sprinklered buildings between 1989 and 1998 were reduced by:

60 percent for manufacturing properties

74 percent for stores and offices

75 percent for nursing homes

91 percent for hotels and motels

Oil, fat, and grease are all extremely flammable products and, since they are so readily available when cooking, cause thousands of fires in commercial kitchens and millions in damage each year. Having an effective commercial kitchen fire suppression system in place is one of the most important aspects of a restaurant or building with a commercial kitchen. Your commercial kitchen fire suppression system should consist of a hood system, a chemical fire extinguishant and several K Class fire extinguishers.

With these together, you will be able to respond quickly to a fire in your commercial kitchen before it spreads too far and takes over—causing injuries, loss of life, damage to expensive kitchen equipment, or downtime for your kitchen operations.

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