Portable Fire Extinguishers
When used correctly they can:
- Keep small fires from becoming big ones
- Provide an escape route through a small fire Help control a small fire until the fire department arrives.
There are five major classes of fires:
- Class A - Ordinary combustibles such as wood, paper, cloth and many plastics
- Class B - Flammable liquids and gases such as kitchen greases, paints, oil, gasoline
- Class C - Energized electrical equipment such as electric motors, tools, appliances
- Class D - Combustable Metals, (magnesium, Lithium, ect)
- Class K - Cooking Media (cooking oils and fats)
The identifying marks for each of these classes are:
You must use the right kind of extinguisher for each kind of fire.
- For Class A fires use water-based extinguishers or multi-purpose dry chemical
- For B and C fires use carbon dioxide or dry chemical
- - For Class A, B or C fires use multi-purpose dry chemical
Choosing a fire extinguisher:
Choose an extinguisher that most members of your family could handle, not too large, but big enough to fight a fire. Choose the correct extinguisher for the hazards present. Instruct all family members on the use of extinguishers. Placement of extinguishers is important. They should be placed along a path of travel, near an exit, close to hazard areas, upstairs, in the basement, in the garage and in the car.
An extinguisher will only work correctly if maintained correctly:
Check the pressure gauge, Examine the container, Have them inspected by a professional, Use wall brackets to mount them in an accessible location If you discover a fire:
- CALL 911 !
- Look to see what is burning (to ensure you have the correct type of extinguisher)
- Make sure that you have a clear escape route behind you
- Pull the pin
- Hold extinguisher upright
- Get within 8 feet of the fire
- Aim extinguisher at the base of the fire
- Sweep extinguisher back and forth
- If an electrical fire, disconnect the electricity as soon as possible
**If the fire gets too big, leave at once. Report any fire (even a small one) to the fire department.