Fire Safety 101: Get a Fire Extinguisher

It is absolutely necessary for all businesses to have a fire extinguisher in the event of a fire. Apartment complexes should have an available fire extinguisher at an easy-to-spot location, as well as hotels and resorts. It’s even advised to own a small fire extinguisher for your own home. If you’re looking to get a fire extinguisher Tacoma WA, here are some of the facts about them and how they can help you take care of a fire before tragedy strikes. 

Fire is no laughing matter. In a report conducted in 2016, there were an estimated 2,950 deaths caused by fire. Of fire itself, 475,000 structure fires were reported and $7.9 billion in property damage. There were 173,000 vehicle fires which caused 280 people to die from them. Breaking this down, the fire loss clock reported a fire every 24 seconds. A structure fire occurred every 66 seconds. That’s a lot of fire and a lot of people deceased because of it. A way to have possibly prevented the fire from spreading to such a lethal degree could have been the use of fire extinguishers. 

While fire extinguishers are not intended for use of fire that has already blazed out of control, it can be used for small fires, and all fires start with a single spark. There are two different types of fire extinguishers. Those that are stored-pressure and those that are cartilage-operated. 

In regards to the stored-pressure extinguisher, the stuff that is expelled from the device is stored along with the fire retardant. In cases where a dry chemical is used in the device, nitrogen is most likely to be used. Those which contain water or foam usually use the air. 

Cartridge-operated extinguishers are different in that they keep the expellant in a different cartridge. Before it is sprayed, this cartridge is punctured and the retardant is mixed with the expellant. 

How does the extinguisher work though? In the case of a dry chemical being used, it inhibits the chemical reaction that involves heat, oxygen, and fuel. This keeps the fire from being able to grow and expand. Fire is expanded when it combusts. This creates free radicals which rapidly react with oxygen. The chemicals used in the dry chemical method keep these reactions from happening. 

For those which use foam as a retardant, essentially, the foam uses the air to create a thick blanket that spreads over the fuel. This keeps the oxygen from being able to reach and react to it. Water can be used as a retardant especially where fabric is concerned. It cools the fuel, keeping it from being able to react with oxygen. However, water extinguishers cannot be used where there are electronics. 

There are numerous types of extinguishers and each does its part to help reduce and remove fire before it can spread to lethal proportions. Whether you want one for personal safety in your home or are looking for the perfect extinguisher for your business, you won’t regret having one.

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