Where to Place your Fire Extinguishers
Fires are chaotic, unexpected, and costly emergencies that impact millions of people each year. In 2018, a US fire department responded to a call every 24 seconds. While we never expect to have a fire, it is an event that impacts 1 in 3,000 households across the country. Hopefully, you will never have to be a victim of a house fire, but you should always be prepared. One of the best things you can do to prepare yourself is to have fire extinguishers available in your house and make sure they are placed in optimal areas to combat any flames.
Before you begin positioning your fire extinguishers, first make sure they are in good working order. Make sure the locking pin, located on the handle, is intact and the seal is unbroken. Check the pressure gauge to see if it is still at full capacity and then look for any leaks or damage on the body, handle, or nozzle. Having a certified fire extinguisher inspector look over your units once a year is always recommended. Once you are sure that your fire extinguishers are fully operational you can begin to place them in areas for best use.
The Kitchen is the most common place for home fires to start. With the stove, microwave and other appliances all clustered in this room, cooking is the cause for 44% of home fires. You should place your fire extinguisher in an unblocked area of the kitchen that is not next to the stove or other appliances, the last thing you want to do is try and reach through the flames to get your fire extinguisher. If possible, place it near the center of the room and by a hallway or door so that those entering the room can access it.
Another great place to have an extinguisher is your shop or garage. This is an area where you likely have stored flammable materials such as gasoline, oils, and painting materials. This in combination with power tools that can be used make the garage or shop a mandatory area for having a fire extinguisher. Again, make sure it is stored in a highly visible area that is not blocked or covered.
Now that we are moving into the summer months, you should have a fire extinguisher available at all of your recreational areas. If you are grilling or using a firepit in your backyard, having a fire extinguisher available is a must. In addition, having a fire extinguisher in your vehicle for going to the lake, park, or camping trip is a smart move in ensuring everyone can have fun and be safe as well.
While you can have a fire extinguisher in almost every room of your house, these areas should be prioritized immediately. Making sure you are able to reach a fire extinguisher in under 10 seconds can allow you to contain the damage and save lives. Take a look at your home, or business, today and see where you are vulnerable to a fire and take action to prevent a catastrophe from happening