Fire Extinguisher Approvals & Standards
BSI stands for the British Standards Institute, which it’s the UK’s standard body. BSI standards relating to fire extinguishers include:
• BS 5306-3:2009
Fire extinguishing installations and equipment on premises. Commissioning and maintenance of portable fire extinguishers. Code of practice
• BS 6165:2002
Specification for small disposable fire extinguishers of the aerosol type
• BS EN 1866-1:2007
Mobile fire extinguishers. Requirements for the assembly, construction and pressure resistance of CO2 extinguishers which comply with the requirements of EN 1866-1
• BS EN 3-7: 2004+A1 2007
Portable fire extinguishers. Characteristics, performance requirements and test methods
• BS EN 3-8:2006
Portable fire extinguishers. Additional requirements to EN3-7 construction, resistance to pressure and mechanical tests for extinguishers with a maximum allowable pressure equal to or lower than 30 bar
• BS EN 3-7
For the construction, resistance to pressure and mechanical tests for extinguishers with a maximum allowable pressure equal to or lower than 30 bar
• BS EN 3-9:2006
Portable fire extinguishers. Additional requirements to EN 3-7 for pressure resistance of CO2 extinguishers
• BS EN 3-10:2009
Portable fire extinguishers. Provision for evaluating the conformity of a portable fire extinguisher to EN 3-
As a bare minimum, you should ensure that all red fire extinguishers you buy are made to BS EN3. Chrome fire extinguishers are different; to adhere to the requirements of BS EN3, 95% of the extinguisher cylinder needs to be red. Chrome extinguishers will not meet this requirement.
BSI standards do get updated, so make sure you keep up to date.
The BSI Kitemark
The Kitemark can only be added to a fire extinguisher if the manufacturer has a quality management system based on ISO 9001:2000, or if they carry out a series of required product tests. The Kitemark symbol is recognised worldwide.
The CE mark
As GOV.UK describes it…
The CE mark may appear on products that are traded on the single market in the European Economic Area (EEA), consisting of the 27 member states of the EU and European Free Trade Association countries Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
Products made in third party countries and sold in the EEA and Turkey can also hold the CE mark. CE marking doesn’t indicate that a product was made in the EEA, but that the product is assessed before being placed on the market
It is the responsibility of manufacturers to:
• Carry out the conformity assessment
• Set up the technical file
• Issue the EC Declaration of Conformity (DoC)
• Affix CE marking on a product
LPCB (The Loss Prevention Certification Board) is the approval brand of BRE (Building Research Establishment).
To gain certification, UKAS accredited tests are carried out, to ensure that products meet appropriate standards. Regular audits are then conducted to ensure the product continues to meet requirements.
Products and companies that meet the relevant standards are issued with a certificate. They’re also listed in the ‘Red Book’.
You can check Red Book listings online: http://www.redbooklive.com/
MED (ships wheel) certified
This product relates to specialist marine extinguishers. Those that bear this certificate comply with The Marine Equipment Directive and meet the requirements laid out by International Maritime Organization.
Many mistakenly believe that extinguishers carried on boats must carry the ships wheel mark. This is not the case.
Stichting Milieukeur Approval
(Netherlands Environmental Certification)
The Stichting Milieukeur relates to foam fire extinguishers, and is a strict test that the Dutch use to confirm how readily biodegradable each foam formulation is.