How to use a fire extinguisher
Fire extinguishers are helpful for putting out small fires. You can contact your local fire department for fire extinguisher training. Or, follow these simple recommendations from the U.S. Fire Administration. To operate a fire extinguisher, remember the word “PASS:”
- Pull the pin. Hold the fire extinguisher with the nozzle pointing away from you and remove the pin to unlock it.
- Aim low. Point the nozzle at the base of the fire.
- Squeeze the lever slowly and evenly.
- Sweep the nozzle from side-to-side.
Fire extinguishers should be checked regularly and tested by a professional every few years.
It’s also useful to know that there are five different types of fire extinguishers for putting out different kinds of fires.
- Class A extinguishers: for use on materials like cloth, wood, and paper.
- Class B extinguishers: for use on combustible and flammable liquids like oil, gasoline, and grease.
- Class C extinguishers: best for electrical equipment and appliances like stoves, televisions, and computers.
- Class D extinguishers: for use with flammable metals.
- Class K extinguishers: best for cooking oils commonly found in commercial kitchens, including vegetable oil.
Most dwellings have a multipurpose extinguisher that covers Classes A, B, and C. You can purchase these types of fire extinguishers at any home improvement store.
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