How to Use a Fire Extinguisher Correctly

If you’ve never used a fire extinguisher before, here’s what you need to know. Make sure you’re at least eight feet from the fire before you start using the extinguisher. Unlock the operating lever by pulling back a pin and pointing the nozzle at the base of the flames. You’ll need to sweep from side to put the fire out.

After squeezing the handle, aim the extinguisher at the fire and then squeeze the handle of the extinguisher. This will release the extinguishing agent. Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent and sweep it from side to side. Once you’ve finished, repeat these steps. If a fire re-ignites, keep sweeping from the side to the base of the fire until the fire is completely out.

Once the fire is out, you should evacuate the area and pull out a fire alarm if you can. If the extinguisher is empty, back away and follow the P.A.S.S. technique to make sure the fire is out. If the fire has spread and you cannot get to it safely, call the fire department or a reputable safety organization to get help.

Before you begin to use a fire extinguisher, determine where you can safely exit the area. Before you reach the fire, close doors and windows, and activate the fire alarm. Then, begin applying the extinguisher until the flames have been put out. You may need to monitor the area for re-ignition. Once you have squeezing the handle, the unit will begin to work.