Location & placement
Having the correct type of fire extinguisher for the correct hazard is essential, but so is location. NFPA 10, the standard for portable fire extinguishers, says that fire extinguishers should be located where they are readily accessible and available in the event of a fire. That means extinguishers should be located along paths of travel for ease of access in the event of a fire. Another requirement is visibility. Fire extinguishers need to be visible. If that’s not possible, signage should be installed to indicate the location of the fire extinguisher(s).
Placement is equally important as location. The NFPA recommends considering elevation when placing extinguishers. Their recommendation is to place the bottom of the extinguisher at least 4 feet from the ground and the top not more than 5 feet from the ground. The only exception is if the extinguisher exceeds 40 pounds, and in that case, the top cannot be more than 3.5 feet above the floor.
Finally, be mindful of location requirements by different class fire hazards. NFPA outlines different location requirements for extinguishers of varying class fire hazards (Class A through Class K).