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Stevie  
#1 Posted : 09 May 2022 10:34:29(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Stevie

I am working with a company which will complete hot works in a loft. Mainly soldering pipes. The activity has been risk assessed and it was decided that they should have extinguishers with them incase of a fire. Since implimenting that, a number of the employees have complained about carrying the extinguishers up ladders and through small loft hatches. 

Has anyone come across this issue? and what was the answer?

Thanks

Alan Haynes  
#2 Posted : 09 May 2022 10:45:34(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Alan Haynes

Are the extinguishers left in the loft, or are the operatives carrying them up snd down each shift?

Can you source smaller extinguishers?
Roundtuit  
#3 Posted : 09 May 2022 11:40:03(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Undertaking a full risk assessment why are they soldering?

Compression fittings would eliminate the need for hot works and the asociated risks.

Roundtuit  
#4 Posted : 09 May 2022 11:40:03(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Undertaking a full risk assessment why are they soldering?

Compression fittings would eliminate the need for hot works and the asociated risks.

Pirellipete  
#5 Posted : 09 May 2022 14:26:56(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Pirellipete

1 kg Dry Powder extinguisher  available from Argos or Amazon

and/or fire blanket.

Use of a lifting bag

I'd be more interested in what ventilation is up in the loft wrt fumes tbh and PPE/RPE/LEV

Edited by user 09 May 2022 14:29:57(UTC)  | Reason: added a sentence

peter gotch  
#6 Posted : 09 May 2022 15:40:12(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Hi Stevie, to add to what Roundtuit has already said about avoiding the risk of soldering, and Pirellipete's comments on controlling exposure to fumes if that is to be done.....

It's not just the fire extinguishers that need to got up to the loft. How do they get all their OTHER equipment up?

...and does the risk assessment consider whether the loft hatch itself is safe? Some are in ceilings and generally reasonably OK, but usually quite small in dimensions, so getting ANY equipment up (and down) could be problematic. However, I have seen some mounted vertically in stairwells and have investigated a fatal accident where the hatch gave way and the worker fell from the ladder.

Once in the loft is there a safe place of work? Fragile materials (e.g. gaps between joists)? Lighting?

What's the emergency evacuation plan?

P

Edited by user 09 May 2022 15:42:35(UTC)  | Reason: Surprising typo G is not very near E on the keyboard. Different finger required when touchtyping

Messy  
#7 Posted : 10 May 2022 07:15:36(UTC)
Rank: Forum user
Messy

Originally Posted by: Pirellipete Go to Quoted Post
1 kg Dry Powder extinguisher available from Argos or Amazon
and/or fire blanket.
Use of a lifting bag
I'd be more interested in what ventilation is up in the loft wrt fumes tbh and PPE/RPE/LEV



I have to disagree- a dry powder extinguisher is exactly the wrong extinguisher to use.

1kg is a bit small if there is a risk of a fire starting from a naked flame in a dry loft space. This type of fire will spread rapidly and may require a bigger knockdown than is available from a 1kg DP

And then you have the issue of using DP in a confined space with only one means of escape. Rapidly discharging a DP extinguisher is almost certain to reduce visibility in the space and create an atmosphere full of dust which isn't exactly a pleasure to breath in when panicking and breathing rapidly

I also doubt how useful a fire blanket would be if it's intended for firefighting. However I accept it may be useful for shielding purposes
thanks 1 user thanked Messy for this useful post.
Roundtuit on 10/05/2022(UTC)
Roundtuit  
#8 Posted : 10 May 2022 07:29:12(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Similar "confined space" and capcity issues would apply to all extinguishers types in a loft environment.

TBH this "control" is the wrong solution in relation to this particular task.

Roundtuit  
#9 Posted : 10 May 2022 07:29:12(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
Roundtuit

Similar "confined space" and capcity issues would apply to all extinguishers types in a loft environment.

TBH this "control" is the wrong solution in relation to this particular task.

firesafety101  
#10 Posted : 10 May 2022 12:01:11(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
firesafety101

Contractors and hot works are well known causes of fires during any type of building work.  I recently experienced a Gas Engineer wrapping cling film around a smoke alarm at home while using hot work then forgetting to remove it.  "Complaint" currently under investigation.

As above hot works should be avoided but if really essential a naked Flame Permit should be used, in writing to ensure safety after to work has ended.

Compression fittings are safer but more expensive but the risk far outways the expense.

Is the contractor insured ???????

peter gotch  
#11 Posted : 10 May 2022 13:48:48(UTC)
Rank: Super forum user
peter gotch

Hi Firesafety101

"Compression fittings are safer but more expensive but the risk far outways the expense."

Doubt that compression fittings are more expensive if whoever is paying is looking at whole life cycle costs. Cheap and cheerful to solder the connections at the time of initial installation but an ongoing maintenance headache for years to come!

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