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Know Your Fire Classifications, It Can Save Your Life.

The Source of All Fires

Do you know your fire classifications? You should, as it can save your life. There are three ingredients necessary to make a fire: fuel, oxygen and heat.

The first thing you need to understand is that there are three different types of fires: combustible, flammable and explosive.

A combustible fire is one that needs oxygen to burn. The flames from this type of fire will go out if the oxygen is removed from the area. The best way to put out this type of fire is with water or sand.

Flammable liquids are similar to combustible liquids in that they require oxygen in order for them to burn. However, unlike combustibles that go out when deprived of oxygen, flammable liquids continue burning until all of their fuel has been used up or until they are extinguished by other means (like smothering). Flammable liquids include gasoline and paint thinner among others.

Explosive fires involve materials that have an extremely high concentration of energy stored within them such as gas tanks, propane tanks and gunpowder containers which could cause an explosion if ignited by a spark or heat source such as a cigarette lighter or match stick.

 Fire has become an integral part of our life. We need it for cooking food, generating warmth and for causing a propulsion to run various types of engines. Unsafe conditions and unsafe acts may cause the hazard from being minor to becoming disastrous. It may cause loss of life and property.

Fire Classification Types

 A fire can be classified into 4 to 6 major categories. The main classifications are:

Class A: Solid such as paper, wood, plastic etc.

Class B: Flammable liquids such as paraffin, petrol, oil etc.

Class C: Flammable gases such as propane, butane, methane etc.

Class D: Metals such as Aluminum, Magnesium, Titanium etc.

Class E: Fire involving electrical apparatus.

Class F: Cooking oil & fats etc.

Read >>Knowing Your Fire Classes and Extinguishers<<

The types of fire extinguishers to use for each different classification of fire are listed below:

1. Water fire extinguishing apparatus and sand are used for class ‘A’ type fires.

water fire extinguisher




2. The foam type apparatus is used for class ‘A’ and ‘B’ type fires.

foam fire extinguishers

3. Dry powder type fire extinguishers are used for class ‘A’, ‘B’ and ‘C’ type fires.

dry powder extinguishers

4. Carbon Dioxide fire extinguishers are used for class ‘B’ & ‘E’ type fires.

CO2 Fire extinguisher

5. Class ‘D’ fire involving combustible metals needs special agents like Potassium, Sodium in the extinguishing apparatus to kill the fire.

combustible metals fire extinguisher

6. Foam and CO2 extingusihers are used for Class ‘E’ type fires.

dry powder extinguishersCO2 Fire extinguisher

7. Wet chemical extinguishers are best for class ‘F’ type fires

wet chemical fire extinguisher

Assessment is Key

Fire fighting is a highly specialized task, and the fire load in an establishment determines the placement of different types and quantities of extinguishers. The classification of different types of fires helps fire fighting tenders to forward appropriate fighting capabilities to the place of the incident.

Helpful Article: “Fire Safety Risk Assessment”

The first step in fire fighting is assessment of fire load. The size, type, and location of a fire determine what type of extinguisher is needed and how many are required. For example, if there’s a small grease fire in an oven, a dry chemical extinguisher will probably be sufficient. However, if it’s a large grease fire on the stovetop that covers the stovetop entirely, then a wet chemical extinguisher would be more effective.

It is advised that to be able to adequately meet your fire safety obligations, you need to engage a reliable fire consultant specialist. At Complete Fire and Pumps we have the expertise to advise on your compliance requirements and give you peace of mind.

Dedicated To Your Fire Safety



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