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Fire extinguisher found having failed inspection

What does "inspection failed" really mean?

By Rachel Cisto | 10/15/14 | Updated 10/15/14 | Posted in News, Campus News

There are panels emblazoned with "Fire Hose and Extinguisher Inside" installed across campus in case of emergency. Each extinguisher on campus is inspected once a month to make sure they'll work if they need to.

"Typically if it's something really bad, like it's undercharged, it'll be immediately taken out of service, because obviously it won't work," says Public Safety fire inspector Dan Peeler.

The monthly inspections are conducted by the RFAs on the academic side, and the RAs in Park River and the Village Apartments.

"On a monthly basis, we're looking to see if they have a safety pin, a tamper seal, it's fully charged, and there's no physical damage to the outside of the cylinder," he says.

Investigator Peeler some small things, like a dent in the canister, or a missing tamper seal - which he says can sometimes disintegrate and fall off on their own - will cause an extinguisher to fail. However, in those cases, the extinguishers can still be used safely.

"If it's something small, like it's missing a tamper seal, we may not immediately take it out of service, especially if the gauge is okay."

He also says that if a panel says there's a fire hose inside - and there isn't - that no one should be concerned.

"It's not missing - it's missing in the literal sense, but it's okay to be missing. The cabinets are old-school, from like the 60s or 70s, when it was common to have fire hoses instead of sprinklers or extinguishers. Modern code doesn't require the hose to be there, and it's actually more complicated to have the hose there than to not," he says.

He says that the hose connections are still inside the panels in buildings that do not have sprinkler systems - like GSU - for the ease of the fire department.

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