How To Properly Use A Fire Extinguisher
The following steps should be followed when responding to incipient stage fire:
- Sound the fire alarm and call the fire department, if appropriate.
- Identify a safe evacuation path before approaching the fire. Do not allow the fire, heat, or smoke to come between you and your evacuation path.
- Select the appropriate type of fire extinguisher.
- Discharge the extinguisher within its effective range using the P.A.S.S. technique (pull, aim, squeeze, sweep).
- Back away from an extinguished fire in case it flames up again.
- Evacuate immediately if the extinguisher is empty and the fire is not out.
- Evacuate immediately if the fire progresses beyond the incipient stage.
Most fire extinguishers operate using the following P.A.S.S. technique:
- PULL... Pull the pin. This will also break the tamper seal.
- AIM... Aim low, pointing the extinguisher nozzle (or its horn or hose) at the base of the fire.
NOTE: Do not touch the plastic discharge horn on CO2 extinguishers, it gets very cold and may damage skin.
- SQUEEZE... Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent.
- SWEEP... Sweep from side to side at the base of the fire until it appears to be out. Watch the area. If the fire re-ignites, repeat steps 2 - 4.
If you have the slightest doubt about your ability to fight a fire....EVACUATE IMMEDIATELY!