Fire Extinguishers


6th Period


Research Report


Fires claim the lives of innocent people around the world every single day. Although smoke detectors and fire alarms alert people of danger, they often have few choices other than escaping from a building and calling the fire department. The average response time of a fire department is more than ten minutes, and by that time personal belongings, business materials, and many other things maybe lost for good, causing thousands sometimes millions in damages including smoke damage. Although waiting for fire fighters to rescue you may not always be the best choice. The modern day home and business should be equipped with at least one fire extinguisher.


Fire extinguishers can save items much better than if a small fire is let burning for another ten minutes. Encyclopedia Britannica describes a fire extinguisher as a “portable or movable apparatus used to put out a small fire,” and from this description it is easily seen that the best things about fire extinguishers are their size. On February 10, 1863, when Alanson Crane patented the fire extinguisher he had solve a large problem. Fires had burned down many buildings since the beginning of time, because water and other flame retardants were not readily available. With a small device that shot out compressed chemicals that smothered flames, so that oxygen could not be fed to the fire, the device was an instant success.


Today the same concept is used in fire extinguishers. New technological advances have led to extinguishers being able to put out a range of fires including oil fires and any small explosions caused by electrical equipment such as fuses or wiring. During world war two a famous chemist Percy Julian discovered at a soy protein could be used to make aerofoam which engulf flames putting them out quickly. Other technologies keep chemicals long lasting, but all fire extinguishers should be checked each month and replaced each year to ensure proper maintenance of the chemicals.


All people should know how to use fire extinguishers in case of an emergency. The fire fighters of Buckland, Ohio work hard to educate people about fire safety. They recommend that all people should practice and learn how to use extinguishers, because during an emergency “the operator must know how to use the extinguisher. There is no time to read directions during an emergency.” It is very important to be able to put out small fires before they grow, especially in rural areas such as Buckland, where a fire truck may come only after a home has been burned to the ground.


Fire extinguishers save many important things in your home, including people’s lives. It is very important to know how to use fire extinguishers, and how they work. The invention of the fire extinguisher was very important in history and has save thousands upon thousands of lives to this day. You can find them at any local hardware store, and make of their expiration dates. Make sure you remember where they are at home and your workplace in case of emergency. Although a fire that is too big should be left to the professionals, a small flame can be taken care of in a matter of seconds with the help of a little red can called a fire extinguisher.


Works Cited


“Fire Extinguisher.” 2004. Encyclopedia Britannica. 1 May 2004 <http://britannica.com/eb/article?eu=34946>.


“Fire Extinguisher Facts.” 2002. Buckland Volunteer Fire Department. 1 May 2004 <http://www.ohiolink.net/~bvfd/fireext.htm>.


Basic Fire Fighting First Edition. Delmar Learning, 2002


"Fire Extinguisher," Microsoft® Encarta® Online Encyclopedia 2004
http://encarta.msn.com/p.