Fire Damage From Water – How NOT To Put Out An Electrical Fire
Electrical fires are hazardous. They are more common than you might think. Here are some crucial statistics about electrical fire in the US that every homeowner should know. According to ESFI (The Electrical Safety Foundation International):
- Every year approximately 1/3 of all house structure fires are caused by electrical sources.
- Residential electrical fires in the US account for an estimated fifty-one thousand fires
- Approximately 1400 people get injured, and nearly 500 people die each year because of electrical fires at home.
- Arcing faults is one of the leading causes of electrical fires in homes across the US, responsible for starting nearly 28000 fires and costing homeowners more than $700 million in costly property damages.
Put simply, an electrical fire is equally dangerous as any other fire. It can cause serious property damage if not managed and controlled promptly. Once there is a fire, it is recommended that you and no other family member should touch or go near electrical wires because of the risk of electrocution.
Therefore, in such a situation, contact us. At 911 Restoration of Carson City, our home restoration experts can help you with all repairs and restoration work, ensuring your property is safe for you and your family to resume living.
Let’s dig deeper to develop a solid understanding of electrical fire, its causes, and things you should and should not do when you have an electrical fire at your home. All this information will help you stay safe and lower the risk of injuries and severe property damage.
What is an Electrical Fire and What Are Its Common Causes?
An electrical fire, as the name suggests, is generated through an electrical source. It is caused by heat from meter boxes, cords, electrical transformers, light bulbs, wiring, and cords—practically anything that conducts electricity.
The source of the fire is electricity, which makes it inherently different from a fire that may be fueled by another source. Therefore, there are specific measures and steps you must take to prevent safety hazards and life-threatening risks.
Before we explain this, let us first share some of the most common causes of an electrical fire:
- Worn out sockets in and around your home
- Outdated electrical wiring (such wiring can’t handle increased power load and tends to heat up fast)
- Situations where all electrical wires like TV’s wire, home theatre, fridge, and computer wiring are plugged in one extension cord. This can overload the circuit and increase the chances of an electrical fire. Normally, the circuit breaker trips to stop the current’s flow, but if they are outdated and worn out, the danger of a fire is still very much there.
Electrical Fire— What Not To Do
Never Use Water To Extinguish a Fire
As the source of electrical fire is electricity/current, never use water to extinguish it. Water is a conductor of electricity. This means that it will not put out the fire like in any other situation, instead, it will make it worse.
What’s even worse is that if that water comes in contact with the fire and you, you can get electrocuted. Therefore, never use water when you have an electrical fire at home. Water is not an option.
Your natural first reaction in an electrical fire may be to panic or freeze. This can make you completely blank, and you may not think straight. If you panic, you may make a snap decision like putting out fire with water or quickly plugging out the electrical wire from the source with no safety.
These measures may seem best decisions but without proper knowledge and safety measures, you can make the situation worse and more dangerous.
Do Not Use A or B Fire Extinguishers
In a home electrical fire, your impulsive reaction may be to use the fire extinguisher. But not all fire extinguishers are designed to put out the home electric fire. Electrical fire is a Class C fire. This means that you will need a multipurpose or Class C fire extinguisher.
C-rated Extinguishers are exclusively designed for use with fires that involve energized electrical equipment. Similarly, multipurpose extinguishers have an ABC rating. They are designed to put out fires that fall under all three categories A, B, and C.
However, if you use an extinguisher with A or B classifications it will only worsen the situation. Hence, it is advisable to avoid the use of A and B extinguishers.
How to Stay Protected?
The best way to stay protected in a home electrical fire is to leave the premises especially if the fire is large and out of control. The next step is to contact the fire department to put out the fire.
Also, reach out to us for home restoration after a fire. At 911 Restoration of Carson City, we can evaluate the damages to your property and provide you with the best course of action and services to restore your home to its normal condition.