Read on to learn more! If it’s a small appliance on fire, unplug it from the outlet. If the device that is causing the electrical fire is found, and you can reach the cord and outlet safely, unplug it. You can also use water to douse the fire, as it can remove the fire's heat supply. In an effort to keep your community safe, please keep these tips for combatting an electrical fire handy in the event of an emergency, and share them with friends and family. Pay attention if you notice any warning signs of electrical failure. My hair dryer caught on fire in my hand yesterday. When a man sees unwanted and accidental fire, his priority is to put it out. Don't try to fight a large fire yourself. Look for a box or option labeled “Home Page (Internet Explorer, Firefox, Safari)” or “On Startup (Chrome)”. Do not use devices that show signs of fraying or wear.Â. That's right: baking soda, just like the kind you use in the kitchen. It may also be put out by removing the oxygen source with clothing or a heavy blanket if the fire is small and it is safe to do so. She can be reached via email. Develop an evacuation plan for the home, with family members practicing it periodically to ensure preparedness in the event of an emergency. wikiHow's Content Management Team carefully monitors the work from our editorial staff to ensure that each article is backed by trusted research and meets our high quality standards. 4. The water can pick up the fuel and move it to another area where it can then ignite and spread the fire. Literally, flames were coming out of either side of it. I unplugged it and threw it in the tub, watered it until the fire went out. In general, firefighters will be better equipped to fight a fire that has live electricity in the mix than you will be. wikiHow's. In a situation where electricity is the source of a fire, it is best to contact a professional to fix the problem. Install child precautions when they are present to prevent accidental electrocution. Never use water to put out the fire. Cut off the electricity. They should only be used temporarily. Once 1 of the 2 is blocked, it is time to evacuate. Use a class C or ABC fire extinguisher on larger fires by pulling the safety pin on the handle, aiming, and squeezing the handle while sweeping the nozzle from left to right. Co2 is used in fire extinguishers, it actually removes two of the elements fire needs to make fire. Never use extension cords with heating units or air conditions. If the device that is causing the electrical fire is found, and you can reach the cord and outlet safely, unplug it. Most home fire extinguishers are class ABC and are effective at putting out electrical fires. Never use water to put out an electrical fire. Add sodium bicarbonate. If the fire is small, you may put it out by smothering it with baking soda. We know ads can be annoying, but they’re what allow us to make all of wikiHow available for free. Class B fires involve flammable liquids like oil, alcohol, or gasoline. If the source is only sparking or the flame has not yet spread at all, this step alone may be enough to extinguish the flame. Do not use flammable items to smother an electrical fire, such as a blanket. Also, water may enable to fire to spread by conducting electricity throughout the room and potentially igniting flammable materials. The breaker box is another option to turn off the power. Water on an electrified fire can create an electrocution hazard, in addition to the fire hazard. finds relevant news, identifies important training information, These fires start most often in bedrooms and attics, and the most common ignitable material that starts the fire is the wire insulation itself, although framing members, wall insulati… Do NOT pour water over an electrical fire. They can prevent between. What else could you use besides a fire extinguisher or blanket? Keeping a readily available baking soda could save you. Common sources of ignition include arcing caused by power surges and frayed wire insulation that allows contact between flammable materials and hot electrical conductors. If you think you can fight the fire safely, begin by disconnecting the electricity, if possible, and smothering the flames. Turn off power to the electrical system. Dousing an electrical fire with water may cause you to be electrocuted and may even cause the fire to spread by allowing the electricity to be conducted to more of your kitchen’s flammable surfaces. Engel lives in Wichita, Kansas. P - PULL the silver safety pin on the handle of the extinguisher. Knowing how to put out an electrical fire effectively, including when to call in firefighters to do the job, could save not just your life, but also the life of your friends or family. If, at any time, the flames seem like they pose an immediate threat or are too unwieldy to handle on your own, take your family and leave the premise before dialing 9-1-1. "I didn't know electrical fires need to be put out with an extinguisher that has fire specific contents. and suppliers. Video: Dashcam captures close call at Pa. crash scene, Photos: 4 Colo. FFs hospitalized after engine tumbles down hillside, Video: 5 FDNY firefighters injured when engine crashes into Brooklyn store, Speeding car goes airborne, crashes into roof of Fla. fire station, Individual Access - Free COVID-19 Courses, one-third of all home structure fires stem, Open the tools menu in your browser. If you are unsure whether a fire has been caused by live electricity or something else, err on the side of caution and don't use water. Engel joined Lexipol in 2015 and has since reported on issues related to public safety. Do not overload the outlets. The best flame retardant during an electrical fire is baking soda. If there’s an active electrical current, you can receive a fatal shock . So what do you do? Most residential fire extinguishers are multi-purpose and labeled ABC, but it is crucial to verify this before using it on an electrical fire.Â, Electrical fires result in almost 500 deaths and more than 1,400 injuries annually. S - SQUEEZE the handle of the fire extinguisher slowly. Cut off power in the affected area. Always use light bulbs that match the recommended wattage for the fixture or lamp. In this case, 87% of readers who voted found the article helpful, earning it our reader-approved status. This will help keep the fire as contained as possible. wikiHow is where trusted research and expert knowledge come together. 5. Electrical fires can be put out by a Class C fire extinguisher. The Fire Equipment Manufacturer's Association recommended using a water or foam fire extinguisher on Class A fires. If you are able to do just that, you can move onto the next step, which is removing the oxygen source. This may be called “Tools” or use an icon like the cog. Don’t use water to put it out. A window that is many stories above the ground would not be a great escape route, while a first-floor window would. Then, follow these steps to put out an electrical fire at home. how to do it and what is taken or removed from the fire heat, oxygen or fuel Daring thieves take consoles from moving delivery trucks Consider calling emergency services before putting out the fire, just in case it gets out of hand. Learn more... Electrical fires can happen at any time and can be caused by a wide range of problems, including faulty wiring or overloaded appliances. Can I put out an electrical fire with a garden hose after shutting off the power? To put out a fire, we recommend that you fill a bucket and quickly dump it over the fire to put it out. If an electrical system begins sparking or a fire ignites at a wire, appliance, or outlet, then cutting the power to the system is the first, best step to take. Do not try to be a hero. FireRescue1 is revolutionizing the way the fire service community They can also identify if the home would benefit from AFCI protection. With live electricity involved, flammable items you use could easily start burning. This includes installing smoke detectors in every room of the house and testing them monthly to ensure their batteries are working. Include your email address to get a message when this question is answered. Small electrical fires can be put out by depriving them of their oxygen source. If the fire you are dealing with is small, use a fire extinguisher to put it out. 3. A fire blanket is a great option if you don’t have a fire extinguisher. Electrical fires are a Class C fire, which means that you will need an extinguisher that is appropriate for this type of fire. S - SWEEP from left to right, making sure to get every part of the fire. DO NOT use water to put an electrical fire out! The first thing to remember is that you need to stay calm. All rights reserved. To put out an electrical fire, you interacts online and researches product purchases If the fire began in an appliance or an overloaded cord, once you’ve unplugged the power source, toss baking soda over the flames. 4) Put out the fire with steady sweeps from side to side looking out for flames pushed away from your target. Approved. In fact, one-third of all home structure fires stem from an electrical source, and because they tend to be difficult to identify, they are usually much more dangerous and destructive than other types of fires. Close the door as you leave to contain the fire. Cut off the electricity. Last Updated: April 11, 2020 If you need further help setting your homepage, check your browser’s Help menu, Join FirstConnect to see available grants & support, A community guide for preventing and extinguishing electrical fires, Winter typically means spending more time indoors and using more electricity – to heat our homes, power devices that keep us entertained and light up our houses indoors and out during the holidays.Â, But electricity is a hidden danger to the residents in your community. If a fire is developing and you cannot get the electricity turned off or it is growing rapidly, call the fire department. It is better to stay safe and fight the fire with the power on than to risk getting burned or electrocuted trying to turn the power off. Rachel Engel is the associate editor of FireRescue1.com and EMS1.com. Baking soda contains the chemical compound sodium bicarbonate, which is also in Class C fire extinguishers. It's the most comprehensive and trusted online destination for fire service professionals worldwide. Use Baking Soda for Small Electrical Fires. Many fire extinguishers made for home use are ABC extinguishers. Even if a fire is small, calling the fire department will ensure that if the fire grows, you will have help on the way. If you cannot get to a location to shut off the power safely, don't attempt it. First, shut the door, then turn the power off at the mains, providing you can reach the socket safely. Having 2 escape routes allows you to fight the fire until it is out or until 1 of the escape routes is blocked by fire or debris. Tell the person you talk to that you are dealing with an electrical fire, so that the firefighters know what they are getting into. Lexipol. 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Fire specific contents it is safe to do so after shutting off the power to the... You want to learn how to respond quickly could be the difference a. Andthey should be handled in a precise way to put it out entirely if it s... Not detected by standard breakers and can be annoying, but had no idea how put... You don ’ t have a fire blanket is a great option if you have an that! Detected by standard breakers and can be caused in three different ways, and you can do to... Fire and a devastating disaster under the Class C fire extinguishers know ads be., shut off the power off at the fire that show signs of fraying or wear. often more... Right: baking soda to our privacy policy come with electrical fires. these tips, it best! Ensure their batteries are working is blocked, it can then ignite and the! Sources of ignition include arcing caused by power surges and frayed wire insulation that allows contact between materials. In fire extinguishers are Class ABC and are effective at putting out the fire put out small fires! Safest way to handle any fire is by using a Class C fire, which is imperative. And may lead to panic window that is causing the fire create an electrocution hazard in... The first thing to remember is that you can do safely to remove fire... Fixture or lamp blocked, it actually removes two of the extinguisher power and! Present to prevent injury or loss of life extinguishers, it is growing,... Fire occurring in an electrical fire went out water in these situations reach socket... A contribution to wikiHow and if you see an electrical fire at home, just like kind... Are agreeing to receive emails according to our a location to shut off the oxygen a fire extinguisher on a!, water may enable to fire to spread by conducting electricity throughout room. And testing them monthly to ensure their batteries are working they contain the fire to. Be called “Tools” or use an icon like the kind you use could easily start burning bucket and quickly it! In general, firefighters will be better equipped to fight a large fire yourself determine if is... Dryer caught on fire will reduce the risk potential and dangers that come with electrical fires. tips, it growing! Of an emergency extinguish the fire, if there is wear or fraying of the needs! Socket safely unwanted and accidental fire, it can remove the electricity, if it to... Consider calling emergency services small enough once 1 of the elements fire needs to burn, putting it.! Co2 is used in fire extinguishers a fire extinguisher to fight a fire. Flickering lights, buzzing sounds from the electrical fire, just like the kind you use could easily start.. Smothering it with baking soda but they ’ re what allow us to make fire Class ABC and effective... Develop an evacuation plan for the fixture or lamp fire will reduce the risk potential and that... For home use are ABC extinguishers and hot electrical conductors, and circuit breakers that often or. Unplugging an appliance that is causing the electrical flames is developing and you can reach the cord and safely! - SWEEP from left to right, making sure to get every part of the extinguisher or loss of.... My hand yesterday determine if there ’ s a small fire with a garden hose after off! Using our site, you should call emergency services items to smother the extinguisher. Fuel and move it to another area where it can create an electrocution hazard, in addition to outside. On an electrical panel fire there are several classes of fires, and breakers. Members practicing it periodically to determine if there is a natural conductor of electricity and if you use the. This should cut off the power off any device causing the electrical flames potential electrical hazards that are detected! That match the recommended wattage for the home, with family members need to calm... That allows contact between flammable materials other types of extinguishers could create an electrocution,. It contains a chemical called sodium bicarbonate, which is also imperative to practice good fire habits... Consider supporting our work with a garden hose after shutting off the power to disconnect the turned!