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How Do I Use a Fire Extinguisher Safely?

When a fire breaks out in your home, you only have a few minutes to act. A portable fire extinguisher can help you effectively put out a small fire in just seconds. However, you must be very careful when attempting to extinguish a fire. Below are a number of safety guidelines for using a fire extinguisher:

  • Always call the fire department first.
  • Fire extinguishers should only be used to put out small fires in confined areas, not large fires.
  • Use fire extinguishers only if it’s safe to approach the fire. Stay at a safe distance when attempting to extinguish the fire.
  • Choose a multi-purpose fire extinguisher (that can be used for all types of fires, including electrical) for your home. Make sure it has been approved by an independent testing laboratory.
  • Ensure that everyone in the home who is old enough knows how to use fire extinguishers, where they are located and can easily handle them.
  • Place fire extinguishers on every level of the home and close to exits, if possible.
  • Make sure your family has a fire escape plan. Don’t forget to include instructions about fire extinguishers in the plan.
  • After using a fire extinguisher, replace or recharge it immediately to be prepared in case another fire breaks out.

How to operate a fire extinguisher:

  • Pull the pin, which is located at the top of the extinguisher, to break the seal.
  • Point the nozzle towards the base of the fire with one hand and squeeze the handle slowly with the other hand.
  • Sweep the nozzle from side to side until the fire is out.

For increased fire safety in your home, don’t forget to install smoke alarms, fire sprinklers and carbon monoxide detectors, as well. For professional fire, water and mold restoration services, contact your local PuroClean office.

PuroClean is a leading commercial and residential restoration franchising company.  Founded in 2001, the company offers fire and water cleanup and restoration services, mold mitigation and remediation, and biohazard cleanup and removal throughout the United States and Canada through its franchise network of 240 offices. Learn more. 
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