When I was in the U.S. Navy, on board both the USS PROTEUS (AS-19) and the USS MOBILE (LKA-115), it was my responsibility for Damage Control communications. On a ship, a fire can be catastrophic. You have to fight the fire. You can run out of a home or business when it's on land. On a ship, you have to fight the fire - or swim with the sharks.
If it's your home, you have to decide if you want to save your home. Most fires start pretty small, with little initial damage. At this point, they can be controlled with a nearby fire extinguisher. In a home kitchen fire, a range-top fire suppression system can put out a hot and difficult grease fire quickly.
The key is being prepared. Baker's Fire Protection and Safety Equipment Company can provide the basic things that can save lives and property. They have two websites that can provide you with more information. They are:
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- Wet Chemical - Class K - Kitchen Use Extinguishers are the best hand portable fire extinguishers you can purchase for restaurant applications. The contain a special potassium acetate based, low pH agent develope for use in pe-engineered restaurant kitchen systems. The recent trend to more efficient cooking appliances and use of unsaturated cooking oils dictates the use of a hand portable fire extinguisher with greater fire fighting capacity and cooling effect to combat theses very hot and difficult fires.
- Water Mist - Class A with potential of Class C - The fine spray from the unique misting nozzle provides safety from electrical shock, greatly enhances the cooling and soaking characteristics of the agent and reduces scattering of the burning materials. This is the best extinguisher for protection of hospital environments, valuable books and documents, telecommunication facilities and "clean room" manufacturing facilities.
- Halotron - Class A, B and C - A "clean agent" HydroChloroFluoroCarbon dischared as a rapidly evaporating liquid which leaves no residue. It effectively extinguishes Class A and B fires by cooling and smother and it will not conduct electricity back to the operator. Halotron is effective for computer rooms, telecommunications facilities, clean rooms, data storage areas offices, boats and vehicles.
- Halon 1211 - Class A, B and C - Liquified gas, pressurized with nitrogen, which discharges as a vapor causing no cold or static shock and no impairment of the operator's vision. This Clean Agent quickly penetrates difficult to see and hard to reach areas and leaves no residue. It is recommended for protection of delicate, sensitive and expensive computers, electrical equipment, tapes and film, automotive and aircraft engines, laboratory chemicals and equipment.
- Carbon Dioxide - Class B and C - Discharged as a white cloud of "snow" which smothers a fire by eliminating oxygen. It is effective for flammable liquid fires and is electrically non-conductive. Carbon Dioxide is a clean, non-contaminating, odorless gas, safe for use on clothing, equipment, valuable documents or food. These extinguishers are available in a wide variety sizes that are bracket-mounted, cabinet-mounted or are large wheeled extinguishers.
- Sodium Chloride - Class D - For combustable metal fires. This is a dry powder extinguishing agent. Heat from the fire causes it to cake and form a crust excluding air and dissipating heat from burning metal. Metal fires involving magnesium alloys, uranium and powdered aluminum can be controlled and extinguished with these unique extinguishers. The are available wheeled or stationary. They are also available with a copper extinguishing agent for fighting lithium and lithium alloy fires. It is effective on three dimensional and flowing fires.
- ABC Dry Chemical - Class A, B and C - Multi-Purpose extinguishers utilize a specially fluidized and siliconized mono ammonium phosphate dry chemical. It chemically insulates Class A fires by melting at approximately 350 degrees F and coats surface to which it is applied. It smothers and breaks the chin reaction of Class B fires and will not conduct electricity back to the operator. Available in a wide variety of sizes and as wheeled and stationary extinguishers.
- Regular Dry Chemical - Class B and C - Economical protection with lower initial cost and recharging. They contain a siliconized sodium bicarbonate based dry chemical with free-flowing and non-caking additives. This chemical smothers fires in flammable liquids and pressurized gases and will not conduct electricity back to the operator. Available in a wide variety of sizes and as wheeled and stationary extinguishers.
- Purple K - Class B and C - A specially fluidized and siliconized potassium bicarbonate dry chemical which is particularly effective on Class B flammable liquids and pressurized gasses. It is electrically non-conductive. Purple K has been the choice of oil, gas, chemical, aviation fueling and utilities industries as the preferred fire fighting agent.
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