Electricity is an essential utility that provides convenience. It makes our work a lot easier and more comfortable. We use it at home or wherever we are for almost everything. It is particularly helpful for operating machines, whether for medical purposes, entertainment, education, and much more work and leisure. Taking electricity out of the picture in our lives will create something very unusual and struggle. Now, how do you put out an electrical fire? Read on, and let’s learn how.
What Causes Electrical Fires?
Electrical fires originate from electric wires, cables, circuit breakers, electrical mechanisms, and anything else that conducts electricity. Overloaded circuits or outdated panels cause them. The panel board and channels become overloaded when the distribution of power is scarce. In other words, most electrical fires are caused by faulty electrical wirings, referring to those outlets and obsolete appliances. For your safety, be advised not to use those appliances or tools with a worn or tattered cord that can send heat onto flammable conductors that can start a fire. That is one way to prevent electrical fires.
Under typical situations, electricity flows from hot to neutral, but if a power surge occurs, the heat escapes. Excessive use of extension cords causes trouble. Older homes have fewer outlets than new ones. If you have limited outlets and if you often use extension cords, you’re overusing the circuits and exposing yourself to a higher risk of fire. Overloaded circuits include flickering of lights and breakers that frequently trip.
High electrical demand causes heating. To prevent overheating, the circuit breaker trips, which eventually causes fires. Resetting tripped breakers may also result in continuously strained circuits, and this can damage your wiring, eventually leading to a fire.
Know the Signs of an Electrical Fire
Electrical fires are mostly caused by circuit breakers that repeatedly trip, electronic shocks, flickering lights, discolored electrical wall outlets, and a burning smell or smoke coming from wiring, plugs, or other electrical devices.
If you smell something burning, but you can’t figure it out, it may be an electrical fire. Your breakers keep tripping, and this means a trip to the electrical panel. You will also notice that there are burnt and tarnished outlets and switches.
Overloaded circuits are not suitable. Your lights may waver when you turn on high-powered devices that require more electricity.
How to Put Out an Electrical Fire
Even if you don’t own a fire extinguisher, preparing for how to put out an electrical fire is a lifesaver. If an electrical fire increases and it is difficult to turn the electricity off, you need to put your safety first. Don’t panic! You must also make sure that you can see two clear pathways to safety.
- Disconnect the Electricity. Disconnecting the electricity to the source of the fire is a great help. Unplugging the appliance or tool that caused the fire will reduce the risk that the flames will spread. Be quick to get to your electrical panel safely and turn off the power. Once electricity is stopped, you are no longer at risk of electrocution, and the source of the fire is now cut off. A fire blanket is also a great option if you don’t have a fire extinguisher. Fire blankets block the oxygen a fire needs to burn, putting it out entirely if it’s small enough.
- Use Baking Soda for Small Electrical Fires. After unplugging the power source, put baking soda over the flames. They contain the chemical compound called sodium bicarbonate, which is also be found in Class C fire extinguishers. Keeping a readily available baking soda could save you.
- Do Not Use Water While the Power Is On. Do not use water on electrical fires, if your power is still on. Water conducts electricity, so if you throw water onto the flames, you are at risk of being electrocuted.
- Call the Fire Department. If you are an attentive kind of person, It is easy to put out small fires by yourself, but you cannot be sure of anything. It is imperative to call the fire department.
- Use a Fire Extinguisher. The use of a fire extinguisher is a great help provided that you use the appropriate one. Use a “C” rated fire extinguisher on electrical fires. “C” means current. If you have one, follow the simple steps – pull the pin off, aim the nozzle at the bottom of the first, squeeze the extinguisher’s lever, sweep the extinguisher back and forth across the base of the fire.
Nonetheless, If the fire is growing beyond your control, evacuate your home immediately. Don’t hesitate to go out, don’t try to rescue your prized possessions because you’re putting life to a present danger. Stay outside and wait for the authorized firemen. They will come any minute after calling them.
An electrical fire can be frightening, but there are ways to be prepared in case of an emergency. As soon as you can, take electrical upgrades as precautions because they lower your risk of getting electrical fires. Since I have given you the answer to the question: “How do you put out an electrical fire?” following this safety guide will provide you with a long way to protect your family. Know more about emergency plans.