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Enhance home safety with fire extinguishers

Fire Extinguisher Facts: Every Second Counts
Written by CMN News Service

(NC) When a fire starts, every second counts. Fire extinguishers can help save lives when used quickly and effectively, making them an important part of maintaining a safe home for you and your family.

Follow these tips on placement and usage to help ensure you are properly prepared in case of emergency:

Compare features. Select home fire extinguishers that feature a metal valve and trigger, which offer the durability of commercial-grade extinguishers, as well as an easy-to-read colour-coded gauge for accurate measurement. Remember, a fire extinguisher that has been discharged is no longer safe to reuse. Consider rechargeable devices, which can be recharged by a certified professional if the unit is used.

Know how to use it: All fire extinguishers include instructions on proper usage. But, more than 70 per cent of owners say that they would not feel comfortable actually operating one. Providing a user-friendly solution, the First Alert Fire Spray features a lightweight, simple spray can design and is an effective supplemental device for common household fires. The point-and-spray technology provides users with more control. Plus, there are no pins to pull or levers to squeeze, so users can put out fires fast.

Keep it in reach: When seconds count, having an extinguisher nearby is crucial for rapid response. Place one on every floor and in key rooms where there is higher risk for fires, such as the kitchen and garage. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) recommends placing fire extinguishers close to room exits so that you can discharge it and quickly escape if the fire cannot be controlled.

Know when to go. Combating small fires with an extinguisher is one component of a fire response plan, but the primary goal should be safe escape. A fire extinguisher is no substitute for having – and regularly practicing – a home fire escape plan and ensuring properly functioning smoke alarms are installed throughout the home, one on each level and in every bedroom, to provide early detection.

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