A Detailed Look at Fire Extinguishers

Fires caused by cooking, incendiary, electrical faults and lightning cause human fatalities and injuries, as well as property damage, each year. For this purpose, city authorities across the US request firefighting equipment, including fire extinguishers, from the public facilities and buildings. For more details click Francis Fire Protection Services Ltd.

Fire Extinguishing Styles

  1. Extinguisers Class A

Class A extinguishers are used to extinguish fires that are fuelled by common combustible materials such as paper, cloth, wood, and most plastics. In this category, extinguishers rely on air-pressurized water to put out fires.

  1. Extinguisers Class B

Fires caused by flame retardant liquids such as gasoline, oil , paint, solvents, and grease require extinguishers of class B. In this category, the main ingredients used to suppress fires are non-flammable gases, such as carbon dioxide ( CO2). Using water to extinguish fire caused by a flammable material, is not advisable.

  1. Extinguisers Class C

A Class C extinguisher can be used to extinguish fires caused by electrical equipment / gear such as faulty circuit breakers, faulty wiring, fuse boxes, powered electrical components and faulty outlets. Since such fires often carry a high risk of electrocution, extinguishers based on water should not be used.

  1. Fire extinguishers in class D

Extinguisher Class D combats fires caused by flammable metal powders, shavings, and dust. This description fits in with chemical substances found in many laboratories such as potassium , magnesium, titanium, and sodium.

  1. Fire extinguishers in class K

Use a Class K extinguisher to put out fires that involve combustible cooking fluids such as fats and oils. Since some of the chemical agents / compounds used to suppress cooking fires are electrically conductive, the power outlets first switch off. In this type of fire extinguisher the active agent works by interfering with the chemical reactions that allow fires to continue to burn. Aim its nozzle at the source of fire to use a portable fire extinguisher, and press the handle to expel the compressed agent.

The importance of extinguishing fire

To begin with, fire extinguishers can save lives if occupants of residential or commercial buildings spot and extinguish a fire in its early stages. National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) data shows that, in 2013, fires in non-residential buildings caused 70 civilian deaths.

Another advantage of installing extinguishers is that they prevent fire-related injury. USFA figures show the national rate of fire injury is 56.2 per one million Americans.

A third benefit is preventing damage to property. The NFPA data shows that fires caused $2.6 billion worth of non-residential property damage in 2013. Consequently, the NFPA recommends having one fire extinguisher installed on each residential building floor.

In addition, each extinguisher should be mounted near a door or emergency exit point. Locations of residential buildings which meet this requirement include front and rear doors because they tend to be centrally located and easily accessible.