The Fire Protection Association says electrical fires are caused by malfunctioning or failing electrical equipment and are the second most common cause of fire in homes. These types of fires are more common during the cold winter; they are not caused by one cause.
In general, electrical fires cause the most property damage and the most deaths. Fires caused by electrical current tend to ignite certain materials more quickly since they burn faster.
To properly put out an electrical fire, make sure you remember how you should extinguish it. Although water is an excellent way of putting out a lot of different kinds of fires, it is better avoided in the case of electrical fires. Since water conducts electricity, it could cause the fire to spread more quickly or even generate electric shocks.
The purpose of this article is to discuss how to put out an electrical fire.
Ways to put out an Electric fire
You can put out an electrical fire in several ways. Most of these methods are cost-effective and easy to apply at home. However, the best way to put out an electrical fire is usually through taking the help of a professional, as they are highly trained and well equipped.
One such incident happened in Melbourne, Australia, where there was a huge electric fire and an emergency electrician Melbourne took it down within an hour.
But until help arrives, here is what you should do if you encounter an electric fire.
- Shut off the electricity
- Baking soda helps
- Gas must be turned off.
- Wrap up in a blanket
- Use a Fire Extinguisher
- Avoid using water
1. Shut off the electricity
When an electrical fire breaks out in your home, the first thing to do is turn off all power sources from the fire location. Ideally, you should turn off the power to the entire house. The moment you suspect that an electrical appliance may have caused the fire, unplug it immediately.
It is crucial to disconnect the electricity as soon as possible to prevent the fire from spreading to other areas of your house.
2. Baking soda helps
Probably, the approach would not work for big electrical fires, but it might work for small ones. The most important thing to do when observing a small electrical fire in your home is to unplug the appliance.
After unplugging the device, observe the flames and pour some baking soda over them. Chemically, baking soda contains Sodium Bicarbonate, one of the substances used in Class C fire extinguishers, making it useful for putting out fires.
3. Gas must be turned off
If your house has a small electric fire, you can resolve it and prevent further damage by turning off the gas supply. Home appliances such as water heaters use gas for combustion. Although gas facilitates combustion, it can still become a fire hazard if electricity is involved.
Electrical fires cause the most property damage and the most death
4. Wrap up in a blanket
You can also use this method to extinguish small electrical fires. Covering an appliance with a blanket will prevent it from catching fire and spreading elsewhere in the house if you don’t want oxygen to reach it and cause a fire. Cut off the oxygen source that causes combustion to put out the fire.
5. Use a Fire Extinguisher
As shown above, small electrical fires can be handled in a few ways. When electrical fires spread rapidly, using a fire extinguisher would be beneficial.
Fire extinguishers come in different types, so you must ensure you use the right one.
6. Avoid using water
Never use water to put out an electrical fire. Water can extinguish almost any fire, but it isn’t a good choice for electric fires. It would only worsen an electric fire.
The reason is that water conducts electricity so well that it accelerates the spread of fire if used to extinguish a fire. So, electric fires cannot be put out with water.
How Can Electrical Fires Be Prevented?
Preventing fires is the best way to avoid them. Listed below are the steps you can follow.
- If you call an emergency electrician in Melbourne, they will inspect your home’s wiring and ensure it is in good working order. Experts can advise you about the proper way to use your electrical appliances and help you to install AFCIs that could protect your home.
- Make sure you inspect your electrical appliances regularly to prevent electrical fires.
- Make sure you use the right bulb wattage and heaters.
- Watch out for electrical failure signs.
If you want to ensure the electrical system’s safety in your home, you should hire a licensed electrician. A certified electrician will make sure that your wiring remains in good condition. Furthermore, they will check your electrical load and advise you on avoiding overloads and potential fires.