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Fire extinguisher safety: Are you prepared to use one?

In case of an emergency, do you know how to use a fire extinguisher?

The El Paso Fire Department is urging residents to learn how to safely use a fire extinguisher.

“For a waste basket, clothes fire or small trash fire, extinguishers are going work excellent,” said El Paso Fire Department Lieutenant James Schaerfl.

EPFD said portable fire extinguishers can potentially save lives and property.

Fire extinguishers do not work to put out larger structure or building fires.

Good Morning El Paso producers Katie Faller and Jesus Rodriguez were put to the test after admitting they did not know how to use one.

“It’s incredible how quickly a fire can spread,” Rodriguez said.

They took a class hosted by the fire department. EPFD offers classes for children and adults.

EPFD recommends always calling 911 first before attempting to put out a fire.

Make sure to install fire extinguishers close to an exit and keep your back to a clear exit when using one.

The acronym P.A.S.S. may be of some help when remembering how to use an extinghuisher:

– Pull the pin
– Aim at the base of the fire
– Squeeze to discharge the agent
– Sweep the nozzle side to side

“It’s not as hard as it looks. As long as you can pull the pin, you’ll be fine,” Faller said.

Lt. Schaerfl said children can also learn how to use one.

“Children absolutely can learn. There are different size extinguishers and different size kids, so if your child is mature enough to take on that type of responsibility they can discharge them effectively,” Schaerfl said.

Extinguishers must be inspected by the fire department every year.

For more information on taking a class, call (915) 485-5699.

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