In all fire safety processes or training guidelines, you’ll see the word PASS. This word has four letters, and each of them holds a meaning that breaks down the usage of fire extinguishers.
Here I’ll explain what PASS stands for fire safety along with its method and importance in detail. That’s not all, I will also give a quick view of the fire extinguisher type and when to use it.
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PASS is a simple word that can help you remember how to use an extinguisher in case of a fire. Each letter in PASS represents a different action you should take. Here’s the full form of PASS:
- P = Pull the pin
- A = Aim the nozzle or hose
- S = Squeeze the lever
- S = Sweep the fire
Now, let’s understand exactly what P.A.S.S. Fire safety is. Well, the PASS is a method that makes it easier for folk to use the fire extinguisher by remembering this word and each letter’s full form.
When doing the last step of the RACE method in fire safety, you’ll need to use a fire extinguisher with the PASS method. Let me explain it in a step-by-step process so you can understand better:
This step indicates pulling the loop metal pin in a simple form. When you use the fire extinguisher, you’ll need to remove the pin from the extinguisher first to release it from the locked state.
Next, it means to aim the nozzle or hose at the fire. In other words, you’ll need to point the nozzle of the fire extinguisher at the fire from around 6 – 10 feet away. Also, try to hold the extinguisher at a 90° angle.
After that, this step indicates squeezing or pressing the lever of the fire extinguisher using your hand. You’ll need to squeeze it hard so that the agent inside discharges easily.
Lastly, it means to sweep or swing the fire extinguisher’s hose from left to right side. This way, you can stop the flame from spreading and extinguish it properly.
Here’s the sound way of using the extinguisher that you should follow:
- Never put the extinguisher in an upright position if you are not using it.
- Be sure to try the extinguisher before actually using it on the fire.
- Check the label to know exactly where to use the fire extinguisher.
- After usage, refill it and then put it into the service.
For Your Information: An institution-based study shows that only 6.7% – 7% of people know about the PASS method, while the rest of them don’t know this.
After knowing what PASS stands for fire extinguisher above, it’s time to discover the type of extinguisher using the acronym. In total, there are 6 types of extinguishers that you can use via the PASS method. These are:
- Wet Chemical (Yellow): Use this for Class K fire type only caused by cooking oil from the kitchen.
- Foam (Cream): Use this for Class A caused by normal substances that easily catch fire, such as wood or paper and Class D fire caused by flammable metals like lithium or sodium.
- Water (Red): Use this for Class A fire
- Clear Agent or Halon (Green): Use this for Class B caused by flammable and combustible liquids like petrol or paints and Class C fires caused by energized electrical gears like a power cord’s short circuit or shock.
- Dry Chemical or Powder (Blue): Use this for Class A, B, C, and D fires.
- CO2 (Black): Use this for Class B and C fires.
If a fire incident occurs, it is suggested to use a fire extinguisher using the PASS method only if you can. Here’s the detail on when to use it:
- Fire seems controllable and not spreading in the building.
- You know the location of the extinguisher and know the PASS method.
- There are a lot of extinguishers available in the building.
- You’ve safety equipment like a mask or glasses to ensure personal safety.
- The exit or escape path is clear and nearby.
You may proceed with the PASS method to extinguish only and only if the addressed situation meets the condition. Otherwise, do not put yourself at risk.
As fire incidents often occur, it gets vital for everyone to learn the usage of a fire extinguisher. For that, the PASS method helps a lot. While it’s easy to bear in mind, one can easily remind themselves of the usage in urgent cases.
For instance, a survey showed that people who knew about the PASS method were more effective at using extinguishers than those who didn’t know.
The same survey also showed that it takes about 1-1.5 minutes for a folk who doesn’t know the PASS method to open the pin of the extinguisher. So, using the PASS method can help people react better and quickly put out a small fire before it becomes a bigger problem.
Pull, Aim, Squeeze, and Sweep is what PASS stands for in fire safety! It’s truly easy to remember and one can get this acronym’s meaning with no hassle.
Be sure to keep it in mind and use it in real life to practice using the FED method before a fire incident occurs. To know more about this, learn the basics of FED here!