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How to Extinguish Different Fire Types

How to Extinguish Different Fire Types

There are a variety of fire types, which determines what fire class a blaze is categorised.

What most people don’t realise is that fire extinguishers are not universal, so there is no cure-all method for every type.

This is the Fire Class graph from Wikipedia outlining international differences in classification

Electrical Fire

One of the main areas of causes of electrical fires is your appliances, as any malfunction could spark a fire.

For instance, with a traditional oven, fire can often escape through the sides.

While it is quite unlikely, your TV can also catch fire if the conditions are right.

First, shut the door, then turn the power off at the mains, providing you can reach the socket safely. This should cut off the oxygen supply and extinguish the fire.

Don’t use anything like blankets, or similar, to smother the flames, as they’re much more likely to ignite themselves.

LifeSafe has more information on what to do about electrical fires in our blog.

Flammable Gas

Flammable gas is used in many households, including stoves and traditional heating systems. A gas fire can be one of the most devastating due to the nature of the fire type created. incredibly

For that reason, if you detect even a hint of a gas leak, either shut off the supply yourself or call a maintenance person to do it for you. Call British Gas or visit their page on gas emergency guidance.

If an ignition has happened already, there are steps you can take.

NEVER USE WATER, as this is ineffective can the fire can cause it to boil and spit. Instead, use a blanket to smother the flames. Alternatively, if you have any extinguishers in the house, these can be a great help ONLY IF the fire is small and contained.

For more detailed information on how to put out a gas fire, read our in-depth blog on the subject.

Grease Fire

These are among the most difficult fires to put out and they can also be some of the most dangerous too. Grease fires break out when your cooking utensils or oven collects too much oil.

If you aren’t cleaning your various apparatuses enough, this build-up can ignite any time a heat source is introduced, such as when you are cooking.

The danger is present on two fronts; heat first, as grease fires can reach very high temperatures, and the grease itself can splash and cover everything in the vicinity (which adds more accelerator for the fire).

As with gas fires, water will only make the situation worse, as it will heat up and explode outwards if mixed with burning grease.

If your pan has burst into flames, cover it with a stainless steel lid, since a glass lid can shatter.

You may have heard of people using baking soda to extinguish such fires and this can be an effective method. BE CAREFUL NOT TO USE SUGAR, as the pan will blow up like dynamite!

Vehicle Fires

House fires can be quite hard to deal with, but it becomes immeasurably worse if you’re on the move when one breaks out. The first thing to do is not to panic and get off the road promptly and safely as possible.

Turn off the engine and get out as soon as you’ve pulled to a stop, then alert the emergency services.

Don’t try to pop the hood, as the vehicle can quickly become a fireball. If you have a portable extinguisher, use it, but only if the fire is small and contained to the car.

Get the Right Extinguishers  

While these aren’t the only kind of fires out there, they are the most common and destructive.

Knowledge of fire safety and how to react in a potentially dangerous situation can be a lifesaver, but having the right equipment at hand is equally important.

LifeSafe offers Stay Safe 5-in-1 Fire Extinguisher, a portable aerosol extinguishing solution containing 335ml of liquid in a bottle that can even in your glove box.

Stay Safe uses LifeSafe's patented extinguishing formula, which is the eco-friendliest solution available on the market. This isn’t just good for the environment, it’s good for you too, as there will be no toxic residue left behind.

All our products have been independently tested by experts in the industry.