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Do Business Vehicles Require Fire Extinguishers?

4th Jul 2017

In Car Fire Extinguisher

More and more business is being conducted on our busy roads; be it transporting goods, a mobile workplace that brings the business to the customer, or simply travelling from place to place on business.

As an employer, you have a number of legal requirements to satisfy, procedures to implement and documentation to record. It’s a minefield out there and knowing your legal requirements can be tough. One such struggle is knowing your responsibilities when it comes to health and safety in business vehicles.Do they need fire extinguishers?

There is plenty of contradictory information out there from different sources, many claiming that a company vehicle is classed as a ‘workplace’ and therefore must follow the FSO2005 and the requirements laid out within it.

However in most cases claiming that work vehicles are a ‘workplace’ and therefore require fire extinguishers, is incorrect.

As a business that prides ourselves on honest service with integrity, we’ll tell you exactly what you need to understand.

A business vehicle is not required by law to have a fire extinguisher installed as the FSO2005 does not apply to vehicles that are licensed under Vehicle Excise & Registration Act 1994 or are exempt from duty under the same act.

The vast majority of road vehicles fall into this category today. However, (and of course there is a “however”) there is a requirement for businesses to conduct a Health and Safety assessment, which should include a fire risk assessment.

Quite often your health and safety risk assessment will highlight a necessity for a fire extinguisher and adequate training in its use.

The requirements for which kinds of fire extinguishers to use in a business vehicle will vary depending on the type of vehicle, use, content and size.

Company Cars

The best type of fire extinguisher for company cars is a vehicle fire extinguisher. These extinguishers are specifically designed to deal with vehicle fires, and they can quickly put out small fires before they have a chance to spread.

Additionally, vehicle fire extinguishers are relatively small and compact, making them easy to store in a car. In the event of a vehicle fire, having a vehicle fire extinguisher on hand can help to prevent the fire from spreading and causing further damage.

Commerical Vans

commercial-vanFor example, a Class A extinguisher is recommended for vans that carry flammable liquids or gases, as it is specifically designed to extinguish fires involving these materials. Class B extinguishers, on the other hand, are intended for use on electrical fires.

If the van has a kitchen or other area where cooking is done, a Class K extinguisher should also be kept on hand. This type of extinguisher is specifically designed to put out fires that involve cooking oils and other flammable liquids.

By choosing the right type of fire extinguisher, businesses can help to ensure the safety of their employees and customers.


The most common type of fire in these vehicles is an oil or diesel fire, which can be difficult to extinguish with a standard water-based extinguisher.

For this reason, it is important to have a vehicle fire extinguisher that is specifically designed for oil and diesel fires. These extinguishers use a special chemical agent that can quickly break down the hydrocarbons in said fuels, snuffing out the flame and preventing reignition.

In addition, it is important to have a vehicle fire extinguisher that is easy to operate, given time is of the essence in these situations. With the right vehicle fire extinguisher on hand, you can be prepared to quickly and effectively deal with any HGV vehicle fire.


If you require vehicle extinguishers it’s a good idea to keep some spares so that if one is used or damaged it can be replaced immediately, and the vehicle can carry on its business without interruption.

Contact us for further advice

Red Box Fire Control is proud to celebrate over 35 years in the fire safety industry.

Over this time we've grown in knowledge and expertise, focussing on supporting businesses with their compliance in a friendly yet efficient manner.

We are confident that we're able to provide our customers with a high level of professionalism and industry insight. Add to this our commitment to integrity, and when it comes to fire safety you can expect peace of mind unmatched by other suppliers.

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