Is it necessary to get my Fire Extinguisher maintained?
Your Fire Extinguisher should be serviced regularly so that it can operate properly when required during an emergency. Even when legislation does not demand regular maintenance, the Fire Protection Association of Australia (FPA Australia) advises that routine services should be performed to protect potential users.
Is a Smoke Alarm compulsory in Residential Buildings?
Yes. Under the Smoke Alarms Act, every leased, renovated and new building should have an operational Smoke Alarm.
This statement is provided by building owners to confirm that vital fire safety practices have been adopted within their premises. Also, the document confirms that a suitably qualified individual has inspected the premises and verified that the safety levels are of the standard demanded by government legislation. The building owner's agent, or the building owner (as opposed to the fire contractor), has to sign the Yearly Statement of Fire Safety. Different states have legislation for the annual fire statement. The name various and some of the details differ however such as an Occupiers statement for QLD and an AFSS for NSW. To find out your current state regulations contact FCF.
How frequently should I check my Fire Extinguisher?
According to the recent Australian Standard AS1851-2012, and the AS1851-2005, every Fire Extinguisher should be tagged and examined on a biannual basis. Based on the extinguisher model, it might require an overhaul (recharge and pressure test) every year, or over longer intervals.
At the moment, Tasmania and Queensland are the only two states that impose laws governing the businesses or individuals who service portable extinguishers. In Tasmania, the 2010 General Fire Regulations (clauses eight and seven) state that anyone who installs maintains or repairs fire safety equipment should own a permit obtained from the Tasmania Fire Service (TFS).
In Queensland, the QBCC (Queensland Construction and Building Commission) requires 'Inspect and Test' licenses under the category of 'Hose Reels and Portable Fire Equipment' for:-The business (contractor's license)
-The business's nominee supervisor (nominee supervisor license)
-Engineers who undertake extinguisher maintenance for the business (occupational license)
Bear in mind that these rules only relate to the maintenance of fire safety equipment and systems in buildings. They are not applicable to fire safety equipment and systems in vessels or vehicles, or to buildings not included in Australian Building Code legislation.In other territories and states, it is the owner of the Fire Extinguisher who is responsible for checking the qualifications of the person who services their equipment. To help with this, FPA Australia advises that technicians ought to hold the appropriate nationally acknowledged qualification, with suitable competency units. For servicing extinguishers, this is the Fire Protection Testing and Inspection Certificate II (or the older Asset Maintenance Fire Protection Equipment Certificate II). The competency units should relate to servicing Portable Extinguishers.