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Topic: Risk assessments - fire

fire hazards - sources of oxygen
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Fire hazards - sources of oxygen

Fire hazards - sources of oxygen

The final requirement for a fire to burn is oxygen; remove it and the fire will be extinguished. Obviously you can’t remove oxygen completely from your premises, but you can control the amount in an area.

Managing the supply of oxygen

This stage of the risk assessment Fire Hazards - Sources of Oxygen, is by far the shortest and can be managed by procedures and training. Under normal circumstances, you will have no need to restrict the amount of oxygen in your building (unless you’re involved in chemical processes etc.). However, restricting the amount of oxygen in the fire is the most effective way of extinguishing it.

Possible options

As part of your risk assessment you need to identify all potential sources of oxygen, then decide how it can be controlled. For example:

 windows and doors. If open these will allow a constant supply of oxygen. In the event of a fire, they should be closed, if possible

 ventilation and air conditioning systems. These systems not only supply fresh oxygen to an area but also provide a route for a fire between rooms. In the event of a fire, all air moving systems should be turned off immediately.


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