How to extinguish fire at workplace using fire equipment

Fire at workplace can cause panic. That's why it is essential to train employees by regular fire drills and workshops explaining importance and method of using fire protection equipment. Regular mock evacuation drills will help them know emergency exits better and situation will be under control in case of a real fire situation. This will help them prevent their panic stations calling the shots.

Type of fire:-

in order to determine the right kind of fire equipment to be used, type of fire should be known as well. All tested fire extinguishers are classified to fight that particular kind of fire. To put it simple, every fire equipment refers to the source of fire labelled on it. For example dry powder fire extinguisher can not be used for CLASS A fires. If fire protection equipment is not labeled, it is not tested. Fire can be classified in 4 types-

1. CLASS A fire- Fire that started due to normal combustibles such as cloth, paper, cotton etc. comes under this category.

2. CLASS B fire:- If fire came about due to gasoline, solvents, oil based paint or other flammables, it falls in this category.

3. CLASS C fire:- Fire that transpired due to electric circuits, eletric appliances or fuse boxes etc comes in this category.

4. CLASS D fire:- If the source of fire is magnesium and sodium, then it falls in CLASS D category. 

 Types of fire protection equipment:-

 Water fire equipment-

Water fire equipment is the preferred fire extinguisher for CLASS A fire; however, this shouldn't be used on fire caused by flammables or electrical wiring etc. You will see these fire extinguishers painted in RED.

CO2 fire protection equipment:- This type of fire extinguisher is applied for electrical fires. You will see a black label apart from being painted in RED. It sprays carbon dioxide. Water fire equipment should never be tried on this fire; however, this can be used in case of a small CLASS A fire

DRY powder fire extinguisher:-

Sodium Bi-carbonate- This is used to put off CLASS B AND C fires.

Potassium Bi-carbonate and chloride- This can turn out to be very effective for CLASS B and C fires as it uses less amount of agent.

Ammonium phospate- It is effective for CLASS A,B, C fires but it must never be used for commerical grease fryer. It can be very dangerous and can cause the fire to go out of control.

Regular maintenance of dry powder fire extinguisher is very important, because they need to be recharged after every use.

FOAM fire equipment:- This is used for CLASS A and B fire. You will see a lever on the equipment which is to be used to fight fire. PIN must be pulled outside to discharge. Aim the nozzle towards the base of fire to put it out. Move slowly step by step aiming the nozzle or hose towards the fire. This fire protection equipment can discharge quicker than many people preceive.

You may also be interested in reading Inspection and Maintenance of Fire Equipment