Knowing the proper way to use a fire extinguisher can save lives and personal property. After calling the local fire department first, personal items maybe saved from the use of a fire extinguisher. Will need to purchase a fire extinguisher and they are available and most hardware stores. Fire extinguishers can be simple to use if these steps are followed. A fire extinguisher can be used until the individual using it has a threat of serious bodily harm.
* Disclaimer: I am not a fire fighter nor an expert in the use of fire extinguishers. It is vital that professionals fight fires and are called as soon as there is any evidence of a fire. Improper use of a fire extinguisher can result in serious bodily harm and or death.
Step 1: Dial 911
The very first step when you discover a fire or smoke is to call your local fire department. It is critical the first responders are notified as quickly as possible to save lives and property. Delay in the call could result in serious consequences. After the call is made and you feel you can safely extinguish the fire, grab a fire extinguisher.
Step 2: Pull the Pin
After the call is made and you have your fire extinguisher, pull the pin away from the extinguisher. The direction to pull would be towards you or away from the fire extinguisher itself. This pin serves as a safety to not allow accidental discharge of the extinguisher.
Step 3: Aim
After the pin is pulled, you will want to aim the extinguisher, from a safe distance, at the base of the fire.
Step 4: Squeeze
While aiming the extinguisher at the base of the fire, squeeze the trigger to discharge the fire extinguisher. Ensure your hand is not obstructing the outlet of the fire extinguisher.
Step 5: Sweep Side to Side (left to Right)
While discharging the fire extinguisher, move the discharge outlet in a sweeping motion from left to right, covering the entire base of the flames.
Step 6: Extinguish the Fire
After using the steps provided of dialing 911, pulling the pin, aiming at the base of the fire, squeezing the trigger, and sweeping from left to right, the fire has either been extinguished or at least smaller. Remember, it is a professionals job to put out a fire. However, it is possible to safely extinguish a fire on your own if these steps are followed.
Step 7: What Not to Do
Here is a quick video of everyday people and the mistakes that are made when trying to use a fire extinguisher without utilizing the steps.