Thursday, December 3, 2009



To provide guideline and appropriate procedure for monitoring and maintenance of fire fighting


EXPLANATION : Fire fighting equipment in an industrial establishment generally consist of

the following types:

1. Fire Hydrant System

2. Portable fire Extinguishers

3. Sprinkler system

1. Fire Hydrant System :-

Since most of the industrial establishments are covered under fire insurance, the Tarrif Advisory

Committee has already laid down certain requirements of a fire Hydrant System in their

publication fire protection Manual part II.

In the factory Act 1948 and the Maharashtra factory Rules 1963 amended, requirements

regarding fire fighting apparatus and water supply are mentioned under various heads such as

requirement of water supply based on factory area, requirement of water storage tank capacity,

the size of fire Hydrant pump to be installed, periodic testing of the installed fire Hydrant

system. A suitable size Trailer Pump with appropriate equipment to be mounted on the trailer is

also recommended.

The fire Huydrant line is always to be kept charged under a small pressure head, so that the

equipment is ready to use in an emergency. A standby diesel operated pump is also

recommended for emergency during power failure when the electrically operated regular pump

will be able to run.

2. Portable Fire Extinguishers :-

Under the insurance Regulations, requirement for internal fire fighting appliances are described

in fire publication Manual part I published the Trarrif Advisory Committee.

Following are the most commonly used types of portable Fire Extinguishers :-

1. Soda Acid Type

2. Carbon Dioxide Type

3. Dry Chemical Powder Type

4. Foam Type

All fire fighting equipments must be serviced and monitored periodically, to keep it in ready


General Servicing :-

All portable fire extinguishing equipment requires the following type of general maintenance :-

a. Complete cleaning from outside.

b. Opening equipment and examining its body from inside for damage, corrosion, etc.

c. Checking of contents, washers, gaskets etc.

d. Checking of fitting such as nozzles, vent caps, gland nuts.

e. Cleaning and greasing of all threaded components.

f. Checking of connecting fittings such as hoses, horns etc.

In addition to the above general servicing, it is recommended that all fire fighting appliances be

examined atleast once a month. The painted portions as well as the brass/chromium parts be

polished regularly and the nozzles, vent holes, should be checked for clogging.

1. Soda Acid Type :-

Weekly- Check that all the plunger is in the fully extended position and that it is clean and free

Quarterly- Dismantle the components, check for any damage, clean and grease the components, stir the solution in the extinguisher body and top up with water, if the level mark, polish its components.

Annually- Operate 25% of the extinguishers and observe their performance. There must be jet of atleast 8

mtrs. For a minimum 60 seconds. Clean thoroughly and if inside is rusted or corroded, subject the container to a

pressure test. Re-charge the Extinguisher. These tests should be arranged in such a manner that each extinguisher

is discharged once in 4 years.

4 Yearly- Carry out pressure tests once every 4 years on each extinguisher by means of a Hydraulic test

pump. The test pressure is 17.5 kg. per sq. cm. And is applied for 2-1/2 minutes.

2. Carbon Dioxide Type :

Weekly - Check the nozzle outlet free from clogging.

Monthly- Weight the extinguisher and if the weight difference is of 10% or more, over that of a fully charged

extinguisher, it should be sent for re-filling. Every time the extinguisher is sent for re-filling, the cylinder should be

pressure tested a 210 kg. per sq. cm. Pressure before filling.

3. Dry Chemical Powder Type :

Weekly - Check the nozzle outlet and vent holes in the treated portions of the cap for clogging. Check that

the plunger is clean and is in fully extended position.

Quarterly- Withdraw the gas cartridge and check if the sealing disc is intact. Weigh the cartridge and

compare its weight with that stamped on its body. If a loss of 10% or more of the content is noted, replace it with

a fully charged cartridge. Check the piercing mechanism for its proper functioning.

Remove the inner shell and clean portholes, if necessary. Also check the portholes in the cartridge holder and

clean them if necessary. Check the powder for granulation and caking. If caking / granulation is observed,

remove ad replace with fresh charge.

Yearly- 20 % of the total number of extinguishers of this type should be put into operation for evaluating

their satisfactory performance of any one of them, the balance will also have to be tested.

5 Yearly- Every extinguisher should be discharged atleast once in 5 years. It should be hydrostatically

pressure tested at 31.5 kg. per sq. cm. However, in the mean while, if there is any indication of mechanical injury

or corrosion to the extinguisher shell, it should be pressure tested immediately. Before re-charging, the

extinguisher shall be bone-dry.

4. Foam :

Weekly- Check nozzle outlet, vent holes on the treaded portions of the cap and plunger, as described above.

Quarterly- Dismantle the components. Check for any damage, clean and grease them as required, stir the solution

in the inner and outer containers with spirit, clean and dry sticks. Top up with clean and fresh water as necessary.

Do not use the same stick for stirring both the solutions and do not pour the solutions into any receptacle for


Annually- Operate the extinguisher and check that it projects a jet to a distance of not less than 8 mtrs. For

a minimum period of 30 seconds. Clean the extinguisher thoroughly and examine its inside for rust or corrosion.

Subject rusted or corroded extinguishers to pressure tests, even if they are not due for it and even if their

performance is otherwise stisfactory. Recharge these extinguishers immediately.

4 Yearly- Carry out pressure tests once every 4 years on each extinguishers, by means of a Hydraulic test

pump. The test pressure is 17.5 Kg. persq. Cm. And is applied for 2-1/2 minutes.

3. Sprinkler System :

Automatic sprinkler systems are installed to absorb heat developed during a fire and to suppress flames in order

to cool overhead structures, piping and surrounding equipments.

The sprinkler system is generally intended to be kept in operation only until the arrival of a fire fighting squad.

The sprinkler heads should be so located, as to effectively cover the area of the equipment and the surroundings

upto a width of 1.5 meters.

At critical points it is recommended that the water sprinkler arrangement may be made automatic by connecting it

to an automatic fire detector system. The fire detector systems will actuate an alarm and simultaneously switch on

the sprinkler systems

No comments: