- Contain - the fire by closing all the doors as you leave
- Activate - the nearest fire alarm usually found near all exits out of the building
- Report - the fire by informing management or dialing emergency services
- Extinguish or Evacuate - If you are not able to extinguish the fire or the fire has been extinguished succesfully leave the building using the nearest fire exit.
Never use more than one extinguisher. If the fire can not be brought under control within 30 seconds, then abandon your effort, close the door(s) and evacuate
Remember to walk – do not run to the nearest exit.
Do not re-enter the building for any reason once you have left. Gather at your designated area. Management and/or Supervisors should account for everyone on their staff.
Pull | Aim | Squeeze | Sweep
- Pull the Pin at the top of the extinguisher. The pin releases a locking mechanism and will allow you to discharge the extinguisher.
- Aim at the base of the fire, not the flames. This is important - in order to put out the fire, you must extinguish the fuel.
- Squeeze the lever slowly. This will release the extinguishing agent in the extinguisher. If the handle is released, the discharge will stop.
- Sweep from side to side. Using a sweeping motion, move the fire extinguisher back and forth until the fire is completely out. Operate the extinguisher from a safe distance, several feet away, and then move towards the fire once it starts to diminish. Be sure to read the instructions on your fire extinguisher - different fire extinguishers recommend operating them from different distances. Remember: Aim at the base of the fire, not at the flames!!!!
Once the fire is out, if possible and if in no danger then don't walk away immediately! Watch the area for a few minutes in case it re-ignites. Recharge the extinguisher immediately after use.
Fire Extinguisher Categories
Different types of fires require the use of different extinguishers. Below is a list of common types of fire extinguisher categories and an indication of what types of fires they should be used on:
- Class A - Suitable for wood, paper and regular combustible fires and is usually 2 1/2 gallons of pressurized water.
- Class B - suitable for gasoline or oil fires is usually dry chemical. Extinguishers smaller than 6lbs are not recommended.
- Class C - suitable for electrical fires and can be halon or CO2. Halon 1211 and 1301 is very expensive and depletes the ozone layer as well. Halon is being replaced by environmentally clean agents such as FM200.
- Class D - used for water reactive metals such as burning magnesium and is in the form of a powder that must cover the material to extinguish it.
- Class K - special purpose wet chemical agents for use in Kitchen fires and deep fryers.