Do You Need Special Fire Extinguishers For Electrical Fires?

It can be difficult to select the right fire protection equipment for your business. However, having the right equipment on hand can keep a small accident from turning into a major catastrophe. Besides having the right fire extinguishers for electrical fires, you also need to make sure that they are kept accessible and your employees know how to find and use them!

How To Decide What Type Of Extinguisher Should Go Where

A fire risk assessment is the foundation of a good fire safety management plan and carried out properly will identify what areas of your premises are vulnerable to what type of fires.

Fire fighting equipment is necessary but should not be your first line of defence against fire. Your first line should be the fire risk assessment identifying what changes you can make to that area that will remove or reduce the chance of a fire happening before. Only once you have done that should you consider your safety equipment. This equipment should only then be used to remove or reduce the chance of anyone getting hurt.

If there is an electrical supply to an area then there should be an extinguisher present that can tackle an electrical fire and your staff should be trained to use the correct extinguisher in the right circumstances to avoid further accidents.

How To Buy The Right Type Of Fire Fighting Equipment

Your choices will depend very much on your business activities but water extinguishers are a no no for electrical fires. Water’s electrical conductivity is drummed into us from a very young age and it is no different here. The water leaves the extinguisher in a pressurised stream so if this hits an electrical source great harm could be caused to the user. Foam extinguishers do not vent foam in a stream but they are also wet and therefore hazardous for this type of fire for similar reasons to water.

The favourite choice of extinguisher for electrical fires in non-specialised premises at least is the CO2 fire extinguishers. Carbon Dioxide is a non-flammable gas, and there are compressed into two sizes 2Kg and 5Kg. In fact, the pressure is so high that you might even see pieces of dry ice shoot out of the extinguisher nozzle on activation. CO2 starves a fire of oxygen and heat in order to put it out and it does this without leaving the mess that water foam or powder alternatives do. a harmful residue so this makes them a good choice for putting out small fires in computers, TV sets, and other sensitive electronics. In other words, your appliance might still function after the first has been put out with a CO2 unit!

Dry powder units may be able to handle different types of fires and are the only alternative to CO2. Theses come filled with a powder chemical, and are pressurised with oxygen free nitrogen. One other advantage of dry powder fire extinguishers is that they leave a non-flammable chemical on the extinguished area. This can help keep the fire from re-starting after you have put it out. The disadvantage is that they can leave a mess to clean up, but this is still better than having an uncontrolled fire.

Get Help Buying Fire Extinguishers For Electrical Fires

Buying the right extinguisher for your business is critical. In some cases, you may need to purchase more than one type to handle different types of fires. If the area of your business is fairly large, you might even need to buy several sets of extinguishers to cover the site. This keeps them handy to all of your employers, and it can greatly reduce the risk of large damages or injuries.

But it can be complicated to choose the right fire extinguishers for electrical fires, and this is where a good company that specialises in fire prevention can come in handy. They will be sure you select the right kind and number of units to keep your property and your people as safe as possible.

Please contact Fire & Electrical Safety Ltd for a free no obligation quote.