Fires can start due to a million different reasons, and they are often unpredictable and take us by surprise. Therefore, knowing how to put out a fire safely is very helpful and could even potentially save lives should you ever be in a scenario where you are faced with a fire and able to put it out correctly and without putting yourself at risk. Knowing the basics of how to control a small fire, as well as what types of fire require which methods to extinguish them, will ensure that you are prepared for all situations and stand the best chance of being able to put out the fire successfully and safely.
So, we thought we would share a few important tips and bits of information on how to put out a small fire safely…
Only attempt to put it out if you are sure of the source
Before you attempt to put out a small fire, it is essential that you know for definite what the source is. Different types of fires require different methods and equipment to put them out. Therefore, if you attempt to put out a fire without knowing what it is caused by, this could be seriously dangerous and make matters worse.
Cutting off oxygen
This is most useful in the kitchen. Sometimes, our kitchen facilities can catch fire when we are cooking something. This could be in a pan for example, and in which case, the fastest and most efficient way to cut off oxygen supply and therefore kill the fire, is to put a lid on the pan. Furthermore, you may be making something in the microwave that bursts into flames. If this happens, we recommend unplugging the microwave immediately and keeping the door shut. This should eventually stop the small fire, however if not, you can open the door and use a fire extinguisher to put it out.
Know how to use an extinguisher
You should make sure that you know how to use a fire extinguisher so that if you are ever in the presence of a small fire, you would be confident to tackle it using the extinguisher safely. Furthermore, if you have small fire extinguishers in your home, you should get these checked every few years to ensure that they are working properly.
There are four types of fire extinguishers; Class A, B, C and D. Class A is designed for wood and paper, Class B is for liquid substances such as grease and oil, Class C is for electrical fires, and Class D is used on flammable metals. Therefore, you must always know the source of the fire so that you are using the correct and safe fire extinguisher. All extinguishers come with instructions on how to use them correctly, so you should familiarise yourself with this so that you are always prepared and capable of using one.
Smother with a fire blanket
The most common place you will find fire blankets, are in the kitchen. They are best used for electrical or grease fires, as they cut off oxygen supply and are not flammable. If a small fire starts, you should smother it with the fire blanket so that the flames cannot spread and die out straight away. Furthermore, you can even use fire blankets on people, in the unfortunate event that a person is engulfed.
If you feel you cannot control the fire yourself, or if you have attempted to put it out and this has failed or the fire has spread, then you should immediately call 999 and get the fire department to come out and help. Not only this, but if you encounter an electrical fire we would advise immediately calling the fire department to come and put it out instead of attempting it yourself as they can be very hard to control and risky in the methods you use to put it out as this can often make the fire even worse and cause more danger.