Precautionary actions can help prevent an electrical fire, but just in case one does happen, it’s crucial to understand how to put out an electrical fire. Mistakes can be deadly, so it’s always important to keep safety in mind. Have what may be needed on hand just in case there is a fire, as this can help minimize the risk of life or damage to the home. If an electrical fire does occur, keep the following in mind.
Safety First Always
Safety should always come first. Homeowners should be aware of electrical safety and have an idea of how to put out a fire if one occurs. However, to stay safe, always call 911 immediately. Let them know it’s an electrical fire, and then make sure there are ways to get to safety if the decision has been made to try to put out the fire while waiting for help. If either of the two ways to leave is blocked or becomes unsafe, use the other way to get out of the building immediately.
Unplug or Turn Off Electricity
If an appliance is on fire, start by unplugging it right away. This can help decrease the potential for the flames to spread and make it easier to focus on a single fire source to fight. If it’s not possible to unplug the appliance or the fire is from an outlet or other permanent electrical device, disconnect the electricity in the home. If it’s safe to do so, turn off the power at the electric panel. After doing this, the source of the fire is cut off, and the risk of electrocution is eliminated.
Baking Soda Can Help
Baking soda on the flames can help stop the fire fast. If the fire is from an appliance or cord, throw baking soda on the flames to help put them out. The components in baking soda are the same as Class C fire extinguishers, so they will work well to stop the fire. They do so by removing the ability of the fire to bring in new air and grow. Homeowners in Williamsburg, VA, will likely already have baking soda on hand, as it’s useful in a variety of situations, but having an open box that’s easily accessible can help put out fires faster in places like the kitchen.
Avoid Using Water
Never use water on electrical fires, especially if the electricity is still on. While water is often a homeowner’s first thought when there is a fire, it’s going to be a bad idea. Water is conductive, so if water is tossed on the flames, the homeowner could end up being shocked. On top of this, if there is any grease near the fire, tossing water on the fire could splash the grease, setting it on fire and spreading it rapidly around the room. It’s simply safer to use alternative methods to fight the fire.
Put Out the Fire
If the power is turned out, there may be other methods available for Virginia Beach, VA, homeowners to stop the flames and prevent the fire from spreading. If there is not a fire extinguisher in the home or if it doesn’t work, a fire blanket is a great alternative. Fires require oxygen to continue burning. A fire blanket basically starves the fire of oxygen, which causes it to end.
If the electricity is turned off, water can also be used to fight the fire. A large bucket or a spray nozzle from the sink can be used to douse as much water as needed on the fire. Keep using water until the fire is completely out. Avoid using water if there is grease nearby, as splashing can make the fire worse instead of putting it out.
After the Fire is Out
After the fire is out, it’s time to fix the problem, so it doesn’t happen again. If an appliance catches on fire, it will likely need to be replaced. If any part of the electrical system caught on fire, or there is concern that another fire could occur, it’s a good idea to have an electrician take a look. They can do any repairs needed to fix the damaged electrical components and to keep the issue from happening again in the future.
Prevent Future Fires
Homeowners in Newport News, VA, and the surrounding areas can take steps to help prevent fires from starting. An electrical safety inspection is a good idea for any homeowners who are concerned about their electrical system. If outlets have sparked or there are any other signs that something may be wrong with the electrical system, go ahead and call for help. An inspection may lead to the discovery of potential problems that can be repaired, so the chance of an electrical fire is reduced. Electrical fires can happen in any home. With October fire safety month underway, understanding what to do if there is an electrical fire is crucial.
If you’re worried about your home’s electrical system or need repairs after a fire, contact Asbury Electric for help. Always keep safety in mind and call for emergency assistance if there is a fire. Once the fire is out, call the professionals at Asbury Electric at (757) 768-7147 or contact us through our website to schedule service.