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Safety Tips

Preventing crime and maintaining safe communities is everyone's responsibility. By practising the following personal and property safety tips, you can help reduce the incidents of crime and keep your community safe.


Fire Extinguishers


Portable extinguishers, intended for the home, are not designed to fight large or spreading fires. However, even against small fires, they are useful only under certain conditions:
  1. The operator must know how to use the extinguisher. There is no time to read directions during an emergency.
  2. The extinguisher must be within easy reach and in working order, fully charged.
  3. Some models are unsuitable for use on grease or electrical fires.
Select Your Extinguisher:
  1. A fire extinguisher should bear the seal of an independent testing laboratory. It should also be labelled as to the type of fire it is intended to extinguish.
  2. The extinguisher must be large enough to put out the fire. Most portable extinguishers discharge completely in as few as eight seconds.
Classes of fires:

All fire extinguishers are labelled with standard symbols for the classes of fires they can put out. Warning: It is dangerous to use water or an extinguisher labelled only for Class A fires on a grease or electrical fire.
  1. Class A: Ordinary combustibles such as wood, cloth, paper, rubber, and many plastics.
  2. Class B: Flammable liquids such as gasoline, oil, grease, tar, oil-based paint, lacquer, and flammable gas.
  3. Class C: Energized electrical equipment including wiring, fuse boxes, circuit breakers, machinery, and appliances.
  4. Class D: Commonly found in a chemical laboratory. They are for fires that involve combustible metals, such as magnesium, titanium, potassium and sodium.

      Extinguisher sizes:

      Portable extinguishers are also rated for the size of fire they can handle. The larger the number, the larger the fire extinguisher can put out. Higher-rated models are often heavier. Make sure you can hold and operate the extinguisher.

      Before you begin to fight a fire:
      1. Make sure everyone has left, or is leaving, the building.
      2. Make sure the fire department has been notified by dialling 911.
      3. Make sure the fire is confined to a small area and that it is not spreading beyond the immediate area.
      4. Make sure you have an unobstructed escape route to which the fire will not spread.
      5. Make sure that you have read the instructions and that you know how to use the extinguisher.
      It is dangerous to fight a fire under any other circumstances. Instead, leave immediately and close off the doors and windows if possible.

      Information from: Vancouver Fire & Rescue Services