What is a Class C Fire – the best suited Fire Extinguisher?

6 December 2022 in Building

What is a Class C Fire – the best suited Fire Extinguisher?

A class C fire is one caused by an electrical element meaning the electrical component (whether electrical appliance, wiring, device, etc.) is connected to a power source.

Class C fires can be started from faulty wiring, a short circuit, damage to power cords, overloaded electrical outlets, and overheated or overcharged devices.

Wherever there is charged electrical equipment or wiring, there is a risk of Class C fires.

Water and water-based extinguishing agents cannot be used on Class C fires because they conduct electrical current which could result in the electrocution of the person using the extinguisher.

If an extinguisher has a Class C rating, it means that the agent will not conduct electricity.

What Types of Extinguishers are Rated as Class C Fire Extinguishers?

Types of extinguishers that are rated as Class C fire extinguishers include:

Carbon Dioxide: CO2 extinguishers work by suffocating the fire, removing the oxygen element. They also remove the heat, as the discharge is extremely cold. CO2 fire extinguishers can also be used on Class B fires.

Dry Chemical: Regular dry chemical extinguisher is rated for both Class C and B fires, while the multipurpose version can also be used on Class A fires.

Clean Agent: The halocarbon agents used by clean agent extinguishers are effective on Class C. The key difference between a clean agent and a dry chemical is that the clean agent leaves no residue and can penetrate difficult to see and hard to reach areas.

It’s important to remember that once the flames of the fire are extinguished, there is still an active fire hazard, as well as electrocution hazard as long as the faulty electronic equipment is connected to its power source. If enough time passes, the extinguishing agents will lose their efficacy, and the fire could reignite. The area will not truly be safe until the power source is disconnected and the fire is completely extinguished.

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