Used properly, portable fire extinguishers can be effective firefighting tools in the early stages of a fire. However, if you discover a fire, the first thing you must do is sound the alarm. Do not attempt to do anything else until you’re sure the fire department is being notified and people are evacuating the building. The most common emergency small businesses must plan for is a fire. Fire extinguishers can be invaluable tools to help fight smaller fires in the workplace or to protect evacuation routes in the event of a larger one. A simple fire extinguisher training technique to use with employees is the PASS method: *Pull the pin on the extinguisher – *Aim the hose nozzle low toward the base of the fire – *Squeeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent – *Sweep the nozzle from side to side at the base of the flames until extinguished.
Fire extinguishers are meant to handle only small fires. If a fire becomes too large or the environment becomes too dangerous, employees should know when and how to evacuate
the area. If any of the following conditions are present, workers should follow evacuation procedures immediately and should not attempt to fight the fire with an extinguisher.