Staff from Al Salama fire safety training showing how to use fire extinguisher while conducting a fire safety drill. Image Credit: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

If you’re not trained in fire safety, chances are that you don’t know where the fire extinguisher nearest to you is. Worse, you have no idea how to use it even if it is nearby.

A fire extinguisher is the best first defence in the event of a fire. If using one indoors, take note of any wind source. If outdoors, first check the wind direction.

“You must be on the windward direction. Meaning, if the wind is coming from the east, use the extinguisher from that side,” said trainer Christian Beltran from Al Salama Fire Safety Training.

If the wind direction is not taken into consideration, the person using the fire extinguisher can get hurt.

Hold the neck of the 
fire extinguisher and remember P-A-S-S

1. PULL 
the pin.

2. AIM the nozzle at the base of the fire. Go to where the fire is but maintain a safe distance.

3. SQUEEZE the lever to activate the extinguisher.

4. SWEEP from side to side from the base of the fire. Check if the fire is out and walk back. Otherwise, do step 4 again.

It’s important to keep safe distance from the fire while extinguishing it. A carbon dioxide fire extinguisher, for example, requires a 1- to 3-metre safe distance when being used.

For those who can’t carry the whole fire extinguisher from its cradle to where the fire is, they can drag it and follow the same principles above.