Thankfully, most people never have to encounter a fire at work. Unfortunately, there are some high-risk scenarios which do result in a flame. When the fight-or-flight instinct does kick in, those who choose to contain a flame need to know how to use fire protection equipment correctly. Fire hose reel testing at regular intervals, combined with accurate resources for staff, will help you minimise risk in your building.

How to Operate a Hose Reel

A fire hose is suitable for use against small Class A fires. This type of fire is fuelled by paper, textiles, wood, plastics, rubber, and cloth. The hose should only be used as an initial response to the flame. An accessible reel could contain a small fire quickly and minimise damage.

It should be noted that this piece of fire protection equipment should only be used as a preliminary defence. If the flame grows or is not easily contained, the user will need to evacuate the area immediately. Additionally, only those who are familiar with the hose reel should attempt to extinguish a flame.

By ensuring every member of your business knows how to use a fire hose reel and protection equipment, you are protecting your staff and minimising costly damages. Fire safety equipment is not installed in your building only for compliance – it is ultimately there to minimise risk. Through regular fire equipment testing and operation education, the safety equipment in your building will prove useful in an emergency.

Before you use the hose reel:

Alert everyone in your immediate vicinity.

Activate the emergency alarm system in your building.

Contact the fire brigade by calling 111.

Alert the designated Fire Warden.

Verify the fuel of the flame (if it is not a class A fire, do not use a hose reel).

Using the reel:

Ensure that you are standing a safe distance away from the flame and have a clear path to the nearest exit.

Check that the nozzle is in the closed position.

Turn on the valve.

Reel the hose out until you have enough length to reach the flame.

Move the nozzle into the open position to allow the flow of water.

Aim the stream of water at the base of the fire, always from a safe distance.

Exercise caution and use the nearest exit if the flame is out of control or if you feel threatened.

New Zealand Standards for Fire Hose Reels

Manufacture, installation, and fire equipment testing requirements are dictated by a number of national safety standards. For the construction and performance requirements of fire hose reels, you can refer to the AS/NZS 1221. For the installation of hose reels, your business can refer to the NZS 4503 standard for hand operated fire-fighting equipment.

For the maintenance requirements of your fire hose, you will need to employ a technician that works according to section 7 of the NZS 4503 standard for the maintenance of fire protection equipment. At Jim’s Test & Tag, we have technicians across New Zealand who can complete your fire hose reel service requirements. Take a look the rest of our blog post for more information about our services.

Fire Hose Reel Testing

Ask a team member from Jim’s Test & Tag to visit your place of business. One of our friendly technicians will check off their fire hose reel inspection checklist according to compliance standards. We can inspect and test each fire protection appliance you have installed on the premises.

Our staff members will assess the accessibility of your device as well as the functionality. If there is any damage to your hose, our technicians can help you source repair and replacement services (only in cases where our services aren’t applicable). Each item will be recorded in a test report that will be provided to each client and stored in our system. You will see every test and risk assessment procedure we carry out on your device as well as the results.

Our free reminder service ensures that your hose reels are assessed at the required intervals so that your building remains compliant. Contact us today for a free quote or more information.