How to use your home fire extinguisher From the National Fire Safety Council, Inc.
Of all causes of death, fire deaths are the most preventable. The statistics prove that prevention is the smart way to protect your family. A charged and fully operational fire extinguisher is another way to protect your family from an unpredicted small home fire.
Have at least one multi-purpose fire extinguisher in your home! A single fire extinguisher is capable of putting out or holding back small contained fires until the firefighters can reach your home.
What extinguisher fits your needs?
The extinguisher you choose should be listed and labeled by an independent testing laboratory.
CLASS A "Ordinary combustibles" used on wood, rubber, cloth, paper, and plastic
CLASS B "Flammable combustibles" used on gasoline, oil, grease, tar, lacquer, and oil-based paints CLASS C "Electrical equipment" used on wiring, fuse boxes, breakers, machinery, and appliances. CLASS D "Combustible metals" used on industrial metal or metal dust.
CLASS A-B-C: "multi-purpose" used on all types of A,B, or C fires found in most homes.
Using the wrong class of extinguisher can make a fire worse.
When should you fight a fire?
Be sure you can answer "YES" to all of these questions before attempting to fight a small fire.
1) Is everyone out of the building? Has the fire department been called?
2) Is the fire small and contained in one area and not spreading?
3) Is there an escape route which is clear of obstacles and to your back?
4) Do you know how to operate the extinguisher and is it in working order?
5) Is the room clear of smoke?
Use the PASS word
Pull the pin to unlock the extinguisher. Aim at the bottom of the fire and stand 6-10 feet away. Squeeze the lever to discharge the agent. Sweep the spray from left to right until the flames are totally extinguished
If the fire does not respond within seconds, leave immediately!
Watch the area and repeat if necessary, providing your extinguisher has not been fully discharged.
Even if the fire appears to be out the fire department should check the area for hidden fire or flames that could re-ignite.