A fire blanket is a safety device designed to extinguish starting fires.
It consists of a sheet of fire retardant material which is placed over a fire to smother it.
Small fire blankets, such as for use in kitchens and around the home, are usually made of fiberglass and sometimes Kevlar and are folded into a quick-release contraption for ease of storage.
Fire blankets, along with fire extinguishers, are fire safety items that can be useful in case of a fire. These non-flammable blankets are helpful in temperatures up to 900 degrees and are useful in smothering fires by not allowing any oxygen to the fire. Due to its simplicity, a fire blanket may be more helpful for someone who is inexperienced with fire extinguishers.
Larger fire blankets, for use in laboratory and industrial situations, are often made of wool (sometimes treated with a flame-retardant fluid). These blankets are usually mounted in vertical quick-release container so that they can be easily pulled out and wrapped round a person whose clothes are on fire
Fire blankets are ideal for putting out small burning pans, so it’s recommended to keep one in the kitchen and learn how to use it correctly and confidently.
When cooking, if a pan catches light under no circumstances should you pour water onto the flames. This will result in the fire spreading out rapidly, often with devastating consequences. Therefore, if you decide to tackle a pan fire, the most safe and effective method is using a fire blanket.
Fire blankets are made from glass fibre fabric, with a thin fire resistant coating. They work by stopping the airflow to the fire, starving it of Oxygen – one of the vital ingredients that fire needs to keep burning. They are a much safer option than the traditional wet tea-towel approach, which since 2008 has been advised against in government fire safety campaigns.
Make Sure Blanket is Correct Size
Before using a fire blanket, firstly you must judge if it safe to fight the fire. This will depend on whether the blanket is big enough to cover the full area of the fire and therefore cut off the Oxygen supply to the flames. As always in the case of fire, you should use caution and if there’s any doubt that you can put out the fire safely, shut the kitchen door behind you, get out and dial 999 straight away.