The red cylinder locked behind the glass case! Usually seen in most of the multistoreyed buildings, sometimes in vehicles as well, As kids all of us have always wondered how would it ever work and when asked parents have always stopped us from going next to it ! and It always remains a mystery. Yes The Fire Extinguishers, the equipments which we never learn how to use assuming that we will never have to use it and operate it. But then like they say its always good to be prepared now than worry later. According to the fire safety industries, 80% of the workplace fire have been put out using the portable fire extinguishers which is saving lives and thousands of injuries every year. But then employees or common people being aware of the different types of fire extinguishers and their working is very rare.
Fires can start in a wide variety of ways, but there are a number of issues that commonly result in unmanaged fires. These issues include discarded lit cigarettes, faulty electrics, chip pans, overloaded plug sockets and incorrect storage of combustible materials. The first step for any fire safety work is to identify the risks within your domestic or commercial environment and putting in place measures to lower the risk. Interestingly,Choosing the right kind of extinguishers can prevent a lot of property damage and save lives as well. Here’s a basic guide on different types of fire extinguishers so that people can identify the potential type of risk in their place and choose the right kind of extinguisher.
Water: Water - Red Ideal for fires involving solid materials such as wood, paper and textiles etc. Not to be used with liquid fires such as oils and fats, electrical fires and fires involving flammable gases.
Foam: White - Cream Good for extinguishing solid materials and fires involving liquids but foam conducts electricity so it shouldn't be used on electrical fires or fires involving flammable gases.
Carbon Dioxide: Black - Good for fires involving liquids because it has a rapid smoothering effect and leaves no residue and can also be used on electrical fires and very small fires involving solid materials. Can't be used on fires involving flammable gases.
Dry Powder: Blue - Multi purpose versions are good for solid materials, liquid fires, flammable gas fires and some electrical fires. However because the powder doesn't cool the fire in the same way that water does in some cases fires can reignite.
Being alerted to a fire is one thing, but then everyone in the building needs to be clear on how to respond to that alarm. In commercial buildings, illuminated fire exit signs will help o guide people to safety, but they need to practice fire safety procedure regularly, to ensure it is automatic if and when an incident should arise.
Whether you are at home or in the workplace, it is important that you understand the fire safety plan and you share this information with others. Making people aware of the potential triggers, how to activate fire alarms and the routes out of a building are all critical to minimising the risks. As are details such as the importance of not returning into the building until you have been informed it is safe to do so.