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By Peter Thomas
For small fires, a fire blanket is a safety device which is useful in any home. These blankets can put out smaller fires before they have a chance to get bigger. Made of non-flammable materials, these are useful for fires which can’t be put out with water. Fires which can be put out by a fire blanket include grease/oil fires and electrical fires. Never use water if you have a stove or pan catch fire – use a fire blanket instead of water. These reusable safety devices can be kept wherever they can be kept close at hand. Even if someone’s clothes catch fire, the fire blanket can be wrapped around them to put it out.
Fire blankets are useful in many other areas of the home, not just the kitchen. You may want to keep one near your electrical equipment, in the garage and anywhere that an oil or grease fire may occur. The newer fire blankets perform better than the old wool fire blankets, with no scorching. Some large wool fire blankets are still in use in labs. You may come across old fire blankets which are made of asbestos from time to time – while these are non-flammable, these are hazardous and should be disposed of carefully.
Newer household fire blankets are usually made of materials like fiberglass or aramid fibers. These materials are synthetic, but will not melt or drip and of course, do not burn. They will not stick even to fire-damaged skin. Most fire blankets are still effective up to temperatures as high as 900 degrees centigrade, making them one of the most effective as well as simplest fire safety solutions.
A fire blanket works by cutting off the supply of oxygen to a fire. Wrapping something which is burning in a blanket smothers the flames. You should keep your fire blankets where they can be easily reached in the event of a fire. To get the benefits of your fire blanket, you must use it properly. Read the instructions and follow them carefully.
It is vital to protect your hands from the fire while using a fire blanket. Wrap them in the top edge of the blanket as you put the blanket on the flame – you can also use fire resistant gloves while doing this. If you still can’t put out the fire with the blanket, call the fire department right away.
After use, fire blankets should be allowed to cool for at least 30 minutes. They require no maintenance or service other than this. A fire blanket is always ready to go and will already have been tested to ensure that it will work for you. Keep several of these devices around your home. They can be folded into a small container, so they take up almost no room in your home. The container quickly releases the blanket for use.
Every home should have these devices handy, especially where there is a chance of an electrical r grease fire. Fire blankets are the easiest way to prevent the spread of small fires and reduce the potential damage. They are easier (and less of a mess) to use than an extinguisher and are always ready for use.
Keep your home, office or garage well stocked with these devices, along with other materials for fire safety. Be sure you know how to use them – most fires can be stopped in their tracks by acting fast; and fire blankets can help you to act quickly in the event of a fire.
About the Author: Peter Thomas is part of the team at fire-safety-equipment.co.uk, the UKs leading provider of fire blankets,fire signs,extinguishers,fire blankets and fire safety equipment.
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