Class A Fires: How to Fight Them
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In order to fight a fire effectively, you need to identify what is fueling the flames. By recognizing the class of fire, you can battle the flames in the most effective way. Class A fires are the most common type and burn ordinary combustibles.
There are different types of fire designation systems – the NFPA is used in the United States and Canada, while Europe uses the European Standard, and nations in Asia and Australia use another standard entirely. Class A fires have the same characteristics in both the North American and European standards.
Are Ordinary Combustibles?
In most cases, class A fires are lit in a controlled environment, such as in a wood stove or a campfire pit. They are usually not hazardous, since physical barriers are set and safety measures are taken to contain the flames. However, without proper precaution, these fires can spread quickly and present a serious danger.
Class A Fires
In some cases, such as forest fires, the fuel is often physically removed in order to stop the fire from spreading. Some chemical fire extinguishers contain ammonium phosphate, which break down the chemical reaction necessary for this type of fire to burn.
Residential, industrial and commercial buildings should be equipped with proper fire extinguishers rated to fight class A fires. Safety standards also state that a source of running water (i.e. a hose or tap) must be within a certain distance of any backyard fire pits or recreational fire locations.
Knowing how to recognize and fight class A fires will spur you to respond quickly and avert danger in the event of spreading flames. Good safety precautions, careful attention, and the right equipment to control a class A fire are essential.