Inspect and Tag service personnel recently returned back from a day of servicing to the factory with a 4.5Kg ABE fire extinguisher that had no pressure in it.
The trained personnel of Inspect and Tag was on a customer site to do 1 service on an extinguisher. Upon enquiry the foreman said there was another extinguisher that he kept in his truck, never maintained as it was kept in his truck and only for emergencies. The foreman didn’t see the need of the maintenance as this extinguisher was not ever shown to the auditors and to save on the price of maintenance.
When it was explained the price of an extra test of an extinguisher is so minimal, and it keeps your equipment to the Australian Standards of maintenance.
When the Inspect and Tag personnel was given the extinguisher for the maintenance check, they could not believe their eyes, that this extinguisher “kept just for emergencies” had no pressure. So in event of the safety of the extinguisher kept for an emergency it would have never worked at all. So in the emergency, the extinguisher would have been worse than no extinguisher. The security of having an extinguisher, even though it was not maintained, would have been better than no unit as the foreman knew it was there to be used in an emergency.
Far better to stay by the Australian Standards and have your equipment serviced correctly to ensure the extinguishers work when the emergency arises.