We’ve ushered in the New Year, and on the forefront of most people’s minds are new resolutions, new goals and new plans for a fresh year. Individuals and companies alike are evaluating budgets, preparing for tax season, and planning out the year’s calendar.
Somewhere in that busy list, facilities need to make room for annual maintenance checks on portable fire extinguishers.
OSHA 29 CFR §1910.157(e) spells out this requirement.
- The employer shall be responsible for the inspection, maintenance and testing of all portable fire extinguishers in the workplace.
- Portable extinguishers or hose used in lieu thereof under paragraph (d)(3) of this section shall be visually inspected monthly.
- The employer shall assure that portable fire extinguishers are subjected to an annual maintenance check. Stored pressure extinguishers do not require an internal examination. The employer shall record the annual maintenance date and retain this record for one year after the last entry or the life of the shell, whichever is less. The record shall be available to the Assistant Secretary upon request.
OSHA states that the maintenance record should be “securely fixed to each extinguisher.” Tagging the fire extinguisher is the easiest way to attach a record that maintenance has been performed.
What recordkeeping information must be included on this tag? OSHA provides the following list:
- The name of the person or agency who performed the last hydrostatic test and the test date
- The signature of the person who performed the test
- The serial number or other identifier of the fire extinguisher that was tested
For more information on portable fire extinguishers, visit OSHA’s Evacuation Plans and Procedures eTool web page.