USCG Warns of Counterfeit Portable Fire Extinguishers

Boating season is upon us!  It seems like we have waited so long for winter to come to an end.  This is a reminder to be vigilant when purchasing fire safety products that protect your vessel(s).  There have been a number of confirmed counterfeit portable fire extinguishers discovered in use that bear brand names like Amerex and Buckeye.  This warning from the United States Coast Guard bears repeating for water enthusiasts everywhere.  As an industry-leading distributor of high quality fire protection products, Reliable Fire Equipment wants to advise its customers of the significant safety hazard associated with the use of these counterfeit extinguishers.

Their capability to extinguish a fire is unproven: they may be charged with a powdery substance that is not a fire extinguishing agent, the pressure cylinder is not DOT approved, and the pressure gauge may not function or give false readings.  This poses a significant hazard in the event of a fire.

The attached press release provides in-depth information on what you can look for to determine whether a portable fire extinguisher is counterfeit.  “At this time, the Coast Guard believes that the counterfeit production is not limited to Amerex Corporation and Buckeye Fire Equipment.  There was also mention of a possible case involving Badger portable fire extinguishers.”

Vessel owners/operators are encouraged to inspect their equipment.  If you suspect that you have identified a counterfeit extinguisher, please contact the Coast Guard Office of Design and Engineering Standards.  Additional information is included in the release.

USGC Bulletin