Fires are one of the most dangerous and destructive forces in the world. Whether you’re at home, in the workplace, or out in the wilderness, it’s important to have the right tools on hand to protect yourself and those around you in the event of a fire.
One such tool that has gained popularity in recent years is the fire blanket. But what exactly is a fire blanket, and how can it help in an emergency?
In this blog post, we’ll explore this topic in detail, discussing everything you need to know about fire blankets and their benefits. So if you’re curious about this essential safety tool, read on to learn more!
- 1 What Does A Fire Blanket Do?
- 2 What Are Fire Blankets Made Of
- 3 Types Of Fire Blankets
- 4 Difference Between A Fire Blanket And A Fire Extinguisher
- 5 Do Firemen Recommend Fire Blankets?
- 6 What Can I Use If I Don’t Have A Fire Blanket?
- 7 Do Fire Blankets Protect You From Heat?
- 8 How To Use Fire Blankets
- 9 Conclusion
What Does A Fire Blanket Do?
It is typically made from fire-resistant materials, such as fiberglass or wool, and is designed to smother fires by cutting off the oxygen supply that the fire needs to sustain itself.
When a fire blanket is used, it is draped over the fire or wrapped around a person to smother the flames and prevent them from spreading.
Fire blankets are effective in extinguishing small fires, such as those that occur in a kitchen from a stovetop pan fire or a small trash bin fire.
They can also be used to protect a person by wrapping them in a blanket and providing a barrier against heat and flames, allowing them to escape from a fire safely.
Fire blankets are a useful fire safety tool to have in homes, kitchens, laboratories, workshops, and other environments where small fires may occur.
They are easy to use, do not require any special training, and can be a valuable addition to a fire safety plan.
However, it is important to remember that fire blankets are designed for small fires and should not be used for large or out-of-control fires.
In case of a large fire, the appropriate emergency response procedures, such as evacuating the area and calling emergency services, should be followed.
What Are Fire Blankets Made Of
Fire blankets are typically made from fire-resistant materials that are designed to withstand high temperatures and extinguish flames. Some common materials used in fire blankets include:
Fiberglass: Fire blankets made from fiberglass are woven from fine glass fibers, which are then coated with a fire-resistant material.
Fiberglass is known for its excellent fire resistance properties, as it does not burn or melt easily and can withstand high temperatures without releasing toxic fumes.
Wool: Fire blankets made from wool are woven from natural wool fibers with inherent fire-resistant properties.
Wool is naturally flame-resistant, and when used in a fire blanket, it can smother flames and withstand high temperatures without burning.
Fire-resistant fabrics: Fire blankets can also be made from specialized fire-resistant fabrics, such as treated cotton or synthetic materials, that are coated with fire-resistant chemicals.
These fabrics are designed to extinguish flames and resist burning even when exposed to heat and fire.
Fire blankets are typically designed to be soft, flexible, and easy to handle, allowing them to be draped over fires or wrapped around individuals for protection.
They are also usually treated with fire-resistant chemicals to enhance their fire-extinguishing properties.
It’s important to note that fire blankets should be made from high-quality materials that meet relevant safety standards and regulations to ensure their effectiveness in extinguishing fires and protecting against heat and flames.
Types Of Fire Blankets
Several types of fire blankets are available in the market, each designed for specific purposes or environments. Some common types of fire blankets include:
Kitchen Fire Blankets: These fire blankets are specifically designed for use in kitchens and are typically smaller in size for easy storage and quick access.
They are designed to extinguish small fires during cooking, such as stovetop or small pan fires.
Industrial Fire Blankets: These fire blankets are larger and more heavy-duty, designed for use in industrial settings, workshops, laboratories, and other environments where larger fires may occur.
They are made from durable materials that can withstand higher temperatures and are often used in industrial processes where sparks or flames are present.
Welding Fire Blankets: These fire blankets are specifically designed for use in welding or cutting operations, where sparks and molten metal may be present.
They are made from materials that can resist heat and protect against sparks, slag, and hot metal debris.
Fire Escape Blankets: These fire blankets are designed to provide individuals with a means of escape during a fire emergency.
They are usually larger and made from fire-resistant materials that can protect against heat and flames, allowing individuals to wrap themselves in the blanket and escape from a burning building or area.
Multi-Purpose Fire Blankets: These are versatile and can be used for various purposes, such as extinguishing small fires, protecting against heat and flames, or assisting in emergency evacuation.
They are typically made from durable, fire-resistant materials and can be used in different environments, including homes, offices, schools, and other public spaces.
It’s important to select the appropriate type of fire blanket based on the specific needs and environment where it will be used and to follow the manufacturer’s instructions and safety guidelines for proper use and maintenance.
Regular inspection and replacement of fire blankets, as needed, is also crucial to ensure their effectiveness in case of a fire emergency.
Difference Between A Fire Blanket And A Fire Extinguisher
A fire blanket is a fire-resistant material designed to smother small fires. They’re typically made from materials like fiberglass, wool, or kevlar and stored in a compact, easy-to-access container.
Fire blankets are ideal for smothering fires that have just started, especially those involving cooking oil, small electrical appliances, or clothing.
They work by depriving the fire of oxygen, which puts it out quickly and effectively.
A fire extinguisher is a pressurized container filled with a fire-retardant substance, such as water, foam, or dry powder.
They’re designed to put out larger fires or fires that are more difficult to access. Fire extinguishers are typically classified by the type of fire they’re designed to extinguish.
For example, a Class A fire extinguisher is designed for fires involving ordinary combustibles like wood, paper, or cloth. In contrast, a Class B fire extinguisher is designed for fires involving flammable liquids like gasoline or cooking oil.
Fire blankets and fire extinguishers are important fire safety tools, but they have different purposes and should be used in different situations.
Fire blankets are designed to smother small fires, while fire extinguishers are designed to put out larger fires or fires that are more difficult to access.
Fire blankets are ideal for fires involving cooking oil, small electrical appliances, or clothing, while fire extinguishers are better suited for fires involving larger objects or flammable liquids.
Fire blankets are also easier to use than fire extinguishers, which require some training to operate effectively.
To use a fire blanket, you must pull it out of its container and place it over the fire.
Fire extinguishers require you to pull a pin, aim the nozzle at the base of the fire, and squeeze the handle to release the fire-retardant substance.
While fire blankets are easier to use, they’re not as effective at putting out larger fires or fires that are more difficult to access.
Do Firemen Recommend Fire Blankets?
Yes, Firefighters recommend using fire blankets as part of your fire safety plan. Fire blankets are considered a valuable addition to any home or workplace and can help prevent fires from spreading and causing damage or harm.
Many fire departments nationwide have started distributing fire blankets to homeowners and businesses as part of their fire safety outreach efforts.
These blankets can be used to supplement fire extinguishers and smoke alarms, and provide an extra layer of protection against the threat of fire.
One of the main reasons why firemen recommend fire blankets is their versatility.
Fire blankets can be used to extinguish various fires, including those caused by flammable liquids, electrical equipment, and cooking oils.
They’re especially useful when a fire extinguisher may not be appropriate or easy to use.
For example, if a person’s clothing catches fire, a fire extinguisher may not be effective, but a fire blanket can be quickly thrown over the person, extinguishing the flames and preventing further injury.
Another reason why firemen recommend fire blankets is their ease of use.
Fire blankets are easy to store and can be quickly deployed in an emergency.
Unlike fire extinguishers, which require some training to use effectively, fire blankets can be used by anyone, even children.
All you need to do is to pull the blanket out of its container and throw it over the fire or the person on fire.
What Can I Use If I Don’t Have A Fire Blanket?
If you do not have a fire blanket available during a fire emergency, there are other options you can consider to help extinguish small fires or protect yourself from heat and flames.
Here are some alternatives:
Fire Extinguisher: A fire extinguisher is a common and effective tool for extinguishing small fires.
Depending on the type of fire, you can use the appropriate type of fire extinguisher, such as a dry powder extinguisher for general fires, a CO2 extinguisher for electrical fires, or a foam extinguisher for flammable liquid fires.
Remember to aim the fire extinguisher at the base of the fire, and follow the PASS technique (Pull the pin, Aim at the base of the fire, Squeeze the lever, Sweep side to side) for proper operation.
Water: If the fire is small and contained, you can use water to extinguish it.
This is most effective for fires involving solid combustibles, such as wood or paper. Use a bucket, hose, or any available water source to douse the fire, aiming at the base of the flames.
Smothering with a Heavy Blanket or Clothing: If the fire is small and can be covered, you can use a heavy blanket, coat, or clothing to smother the flames and cut off the oxygen supply.
Be cautious of the material you use, as synthetic materials may melt or burn, and avoid using materials that can easily catch fire.
Sand or Dirt: If the fire is caused by flammable liquids, such as oil or grease, you can use sand or dirt to suffocate the flames. Cover the fire with a thick layer of sand or dirt to smother the fire and prevent it from spreading.
Baking Soda or Fire Extinguishing Powder: If you have baking soda or a fire extinguishing powder, such as ABC powder, you can use it to extinguish small fires caused by flammable liquids, electrical equipment, or combustible materials. Aim at the base of the fire and discharge the powder to suppress the flames.
It’s important to remember that these alternatives are for small fires that can be safely managed and extinguished without putting yourself or others at risk.
For larger fires or unsure how to safely handle a fire, evacuate the area immediately, call emergency services, and follow established fire safety procedures.
Prevention, preparedness, and proper use of fire safety equipment, including fire blankets and fire extinguishers, are key to protecting yourself and others in case of a fire emergency.
Do Fire Blankets Protect You From Heat?
Yes, fire blankets are designed to protect you from heat. Fire blankets are made from fire-resistant materials that can withstand high temperatures and provide a barrier between you and the heat source.
When properly used, fire blankets can help shield you from heat, flames, and burning embers, reducing the risk of burns and other injuries.
They are especially useful for smothering small fires or protecting yourself while evacuating from a fire.
However, it is important to remember that fire blankets have their limitations, and in case of a large or spreading fire, it is always best to evacuate the area immediately and call emergency services for professional assistance.
How To Use Fire Blankets
Using a fire blanket correctly can help extinguish small fires or protect yourself from heat and flames. Here are the general steps for using a fire blanket:
Stay Calm and Assess the Situation: If you encounter a small fire, remain calm and quickly assess the situation. Determine if it is safe to attempt to extinguish the fire with a fire blanket or if you should evacuate the area and call emergency services.
Grab the Fire Blanket: If it is safe to use a fire blanket, locate it and remove it from its storage container or packaging.
Hold the fire blanket by the corners or edges, avoiding the center, as it may become hot during use.
Cover the Fire: Approach the fire cautiously and place the fire blanket over the flames or the source of the fire.
Use a gentle, sweeping motion to cover the fire completely and avoid any gaps that may allow air to enter and fuel the flames.
Turn Off the Heat Source: If possible, turn off the heat source that caused the fire, such as a stove or an electrical appliance, to prevent the fire from reigniting.
Leave the Fire Blanket in Place: Once the fire is covered with the fire blanket, do not remove it.
Leave the fire blanket in place, and do not attempt to move it until it has completely cooled down.
Wait and Monitor: Wait for the fire to be fully extinguished and the area to cool down.
Monitor the area to ensure that the fire does not reignite. Do not touch the fire blanket or the area around it until it has cooled down to avoid burns or injuries.
Seek Professional Help: After using a fire blanket, even if the fire appears to be extinguished, it is important to seek professional help and have the fire site inspected by fire authorities to ensure that there are no hidden embers or risks of re-ignition.
Fire blankets are essential fire safety tools that can effectively extinguish small fires or provide protection from heat and flames. They are made from fire-resistant materials and are designed to be used in emergencies.
Proper use of a fire blanket involves calmly assessing the situation, covering the fire completely with the fire blanket, turning off the heat source if possible, leaving the fire blanket in place until the fire is fully extinguished and the area has cooled down, and seeking professional help afterward.
Fire blankets should be used by the manufacturer’s instructions and proper fire safety procedures.
Hi, I m Aaron Smith, a firefighter, and creator of Firefighterline.com, a website that provides top-notch training courses for firefighting organizations. After completing my studies, I quickly rose through the fire service ranks, eventually becoming Captain at one of the busiest fire departments in the state.