Getting to know your Extinguisher

They’re red, they’re heavy, and they can save your life. We’re talking about Fire Extinguishers! Fire Extinguishers can protect you from life threatening flames and are the most commonly owned peace of fire protection equipment. Extinguishers are the first line of defense when a flame occurs and can be a determining factor in yours and the safety and those around you. Whether it is in an office, restaurant or even your home these large pieces of metal are often ignored but can make the difference between a small fire and complete destruction. With that being said, you probably have seen an extinguisher or passed by one as you walked to your desk this morning. But do you know your extinguishers? Not many people realize, but there are different extinguishers for every type of fire. Understanding the different types of extinguishers can help you be prepared for every type of hazard.

There are 4 main types of fire extinguishers: CO2, Dry Powder, AFF Foam, and Water.  First are CO2 extinguishers which are commonly used for flammable liquids and electrical fires. These guys are usually found in locations that have large amounts of electrical equipment like computer server rooms.  Next we have dry powder extinguishers or ‘ABC’ extinguishers because they can combat against all three classes of fires. These extinguishers are the most commonly used but beware of using them inside as they make a big mess because of their expelling agents! Dry powder extinguishers can most likely be found in offices, schools, or hospitals.  Now AFF foam are good for A and B fires. They can be found in large buildings or warehouses.  Finally we have water extinguishers, and these are best for class A fires that deal with paper, fabrics, textiles and wood. You can find one of these near the exit of most buildings made of wood or other organic materials.

Although you may not see all of these types of extinguishers all of the time, it is important to have a basic knowledge of any extinguisher that way you are set for every type of fire. Good knowledge of fire extinguishers can help keep you and your loved ones safe, and safety is top priority!