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New Jersey May Repeal Fire Extinguisher Requirement

Posted on: October 22, 2012

This Monday, a New Jersey Senate committee will meet to consider legislation that would end regulations stating that one and two family homes must be equipped with a portable fire extinguisher.

Sen. Tony Bucco, the primary sponsor of the measure, says the move was recommended by the state fire safety committee, and that fire extinguishers can give residents and homeowners a false sense of security.

“Many people don’t know how to use them properly. Also they do become outdated,” he said. “If they misuse them and they jam up or whatever, they’re risking their own lives as well as their loved ones who are in the house with them.”

At Confires, we want everyone to feel comfortable using their fire extinguishers, whether in your home or in your commercial building. When you are ready to begin using your fire extinguisher, just remember: P.A.S.S.

  • P – Pull the pin at the top of the fire extinguisher. This releases the lock and allows you to discharge the extinguishant.
  • A – Aim at the base of the fire. Make sure you aim your fire extinguisher at the base of the fire instead of the flames so that you don’t risk blowing them around and causing the fire to spread.
  • S – Squeeze the lever slowly. This will release the extinguishant from your fire extinguisher. The extinguishant will stop flowing as soon as the handle is released.
  • S – Sweep from side to side, covering up all areas of the fire’s source with the extinguishant until the fire is completely doused (remember: aim at the base, not the flames!). Make sure you start a safe distance away from the source of the fire (most fire extinguishers have a range of more than 10 feet) and work your way in until the fire has been completely extinguished. Wait a few seconds after it’s gone to make sure it doesn’t reignite.

Fire extinguishers can keep you safe and buy you vital seconds during a fire emergency, but they must be frequently inspected, both by you (monthly) and by a professional fire protection services company (annually) to ensure that they will be able to keep you protected at all times. And remember – if you don’t feel comfortable using a fire extinguisher, just get out of the building as quickly as possible – your safety is more important!

If you need your building’s fire extinguishers inspected, or if you need fire extinguisher training for your staff, call Confires today!

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