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Guest CraigDip

Do I need sprinklers and portable extinguishers?

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Guest CraigDip

Could you please advice me.
I have fire sprinkler system in place do I still require fire extinguisher as well as the sprinkler systems covers every part of the building ?

Craig

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It is all about risk assessment and yes, you do need portable extinguishers because, if you have a small fire, it is better to extinguish it before it develops sufficiently to actuate the sprinklers. Leave the sprinklers to do their stuff when the areas are unoccupied or too large to be dealt with Portable Fire Fighting Equipment and save the business.

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As Tom said, sprinklers are to protect against fire when the building is un-ocupied. By the time sprinklers activate the fire has to be "reasonably big*" where as if a member of staff sees the fire first, they can use an extinguisher which in turn will stop a small fire becoming a big fire, saving both time and money.

I would suggest that staff should also be given basic training on how to use portable fire extinguishers.

* Depending on location of sprinklers.

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Guest Billy Cunningham

Also, don't forget that whilst this should never be the case you may require fire extinguisher to assist you in your evacuation. As stated previously the fire will have to be of a significant size to activate the heads.

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Guest Kieran

What if it is a resedential care home where the sprinklers are desigend to protect the occupants and the building?

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The difference between QR and standard sprinklers is the time of response in tackling the fire, this means QR sprinklers responding faster, gives the occupants more time to escape therefore safer. 

When considering portable extinguishers firstly any special risk will require special extinguisher, then you need to consider response times, you first need to identify the time of discovery. Human intervention with an extinguisher, when you find a fire during normal work practices, would be the quickest, fire alarm smoke, alerting the staff, then using a portable extinguisher, third a QR sprinkler confining it to the area of origin also increasing the time for escape and finally a standard sprinkler system.

Consequently in my opinion portable fire extinguisher are required with quick response sprinklers to extinguish any small fires before the develop to a size that would activate the sprinklers.  

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