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You often have only a split second to choose whether to fight a small fire with an extinguisher or to exit the building or help get others out. Fire extinguishers should not be used to fight a fully-involved fire – they are only a stop-gap measure to keep a very small fire in check until the fire department arrives.

  • If you have a fire extinguisher, make sure that it is fully charged and ready to use. The arrow should be in the green as shown below:
  • A fire extinguisher should be used to fight only small fires, not large fires or fires that are spreading.
  • First, call the fire department; then, if the fire is still small enough, use the extinguisher. That way, if the extinguisher isn't enough – help is on the way.
  • Always keep your back to the exit while using an extinguisher, so you will have a way out once the extinguisher is empty.
  • Learn the PASS System for using a fire extinguisher - Pull, Aim, Squeeze, Sweep.

South County Fire periodically offers fire extinguisher trainings. If you are interested in attending a fire extinguisher training, or if your business is interested in training its staff, contact Fire & Life Safety Education Specialist Shawneri Guzman at (425) 551-1254.