How to use fire hose reels to extinguish a fire

Fire is an ever-present danger for businesses and property owners. While you may never face a fiery situation at work, it’s still important to be aware of the precautions one needs to take in case of fire, as well as how to use the fire safety tools and equipment available to combat dangerous infernos.

While fire extinguishers are the simplest devices to use in fire emergencies, fire hose reels are common in many buildings. These devices are used to fight class A fires by providing a steady supply of water. There are two main types of fire hose reels:

Fixed wall-mounted fire hose reel

These kinds of hose reels are permanently fixed onto a wall and plugged into a building’s main water supply. They are installed in locations that are easily accessible and are used to extinguish or contain small fires. There needs to be enough wall space around these reels to ensure that there are no obstructions when they need to be used.

Swing arm fire hose reel

Unlike the standard mounted hose reel, the swing arm is mounted on a large hinge while the complete assembly is usually installed in a fire hose cabinet. The benefit of the swing arm reel is that when it is used, it can be swung outwards using the hinge. This provides more versatility for users, especially if sudden movements or jerks are required to extinguish or contain a fire.

Fire hose reel user manual

When using a fire hose reel, you first need to declare your intentions to anyone who may be in your vicinity. Once you’re clear, you need to follow these steps with the utmost caution:

  1. Ensure that there is a clear path for you to an exit.

  2. (For standard reels) break the anti-tamper seal if applicable.

  3. Turn the water on at the stop valve.

  4. Pull the hose as much as is required to reach the fire.

  5. Carefully make your way to the fire while maintaining a clear line of site to your predetermined exit.

  6. Allow the water to flow out the nozzle by switching it to an open position (turn it on).

  7. Aim the stream of water at the base of the fire you’re trying to extinguish. Don’t overdo it; once the fire is out, turnthe nozzle off. Excessive water usage might lead to unnecessary damage and additional costs to you or your business.

  8. Should the flame be unextinguishable with the fire hose, you will need to drop everything and make your way to the predetermined exit as quickly as possible. Don’t try to be a hero.

Putting the reel back

  1. Once the fire is out, turn the hose off at the nozzle.

  2. Rewind the hose in even layers (easier done while there’s still water in the hose).

  3. Turn the water off at the stop valve.

  4. Open the nozzle once more to release the pressure into a bucket.

  5. Close the nozzle.

For more guidance on how to use these devices, check out this video! If you’re confident you know enough to use a fire hose reel, browse our range of fire hose reels and get in touch to take that next step in increasing your business’s fire safety!

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