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Media Release

Get your fire extinguisher checked and learn how to use it
Wednesday 4 August 2010 – 11:50 AM

People with fire extinguishers in their home, car, boat or caravan are urged to make sure they are in working order in case of a fire.


Knowing how to use the fire extinguisher in an emergency may save their life..


FESA Safety Training Officer Tom Goodlich said like most safety equipment, fire extinguishers should be checked regularly to ensure they were in working order.


The warning follows several cases in which adults and children accidentally set off the fire extinguisher in their work or family car making it useless in the event of a fire.


“It’s not uncommon for someone to knock a fire extinguisher causing it to leak and then forget to tell someone about it or simply install a fire extinguisher and leave it for years without giving it a second thought,” Mr Goodlich said.


“But unless it’s in date and in working order you won’t be able to rely on it during a fire.


“You must also make sure everyone in your home or car understands how to use the fire extinguisher beforehand as trying to work it out during a fire will cause panic.”


There are many fire extinguishers on the market designed to fight different types of fires.


FESA recommends:

  • You seek professional advice from a reputable fire equipment supplier on the best size and type of extinguisher to suit your situation
  • Ensure it meets Australian Standards
  • Ask the supplier to show you how to use your extinguisher
  • Check it once a month to ensure it has not been accidentally set off
  • Have it professionally serviced every six months
  • Gently rock the extinguisher from side to side to see if the contents have settled and become hard, if they have then gently tap the base with your hand to loosen them
  • If you travel long distance install an extinguisher in your car  in easy reach


Mr Goodlich said for general use in the home, car or caravan FESA recommends a dry chemical powder extinguisher as it is useful for most small fires


“As everyone’s situation is different it’s important you get professional advice to make sure you have the right type of extinguisher for your needs,” he said.


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