For industrial areas that deal with metals, chemicals, and potential fire hazards, a normal fire extinguisher simply will not do. Instead, those areas should invest in class D extinguishers which are designed specifically to extinguish those incredibly hot fires. You should use a D class fire extinguisher if the area you are working in deals with titanium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, lithium, zirconium, and most types of plastics. These fires are incredibly dangerous if the wrong extinguisher is used, so it’s important to have the right equipment for the job.
Where to Acquire Industrial Fire Extinguishers
You can pick up class D extinguishers through most suppliers of other fire safety equipment. Note, however, that some suppliers do specialize in residential or commercial equipment and thus might not have a large selection of industrial fire extinguishers on hand. You can pick up a fire extinguisher type D from major online suppliers like Herbertwilliams.com or through local outlets that provide service to both commercial and industrial areas. No matter where you buy the D rated fire extinguisher, however, make sure that you use a brand that has a good standing and high customer reviews. You never want to go for a fire extinguisher only to find that it is ineffective against the emergency at hand.
How Does a Type D Fire Extinguisher Work?
Most fire extinguishers use either water or wet chemicals to both cool a fire at its source and suppress the flames. For metal and chemical fires, this can actually make the problem worse, as the flames burn hot enough that they will only spread in contact with such chemicals. Type D extinguishers use dry suppression instead, projecting a dry powder that forms a crust over the blaze. This deprives the fire of oxygen that it needs in order to survive, eventually putting it out entirely. Because they are made for industrial use, these extinguishers tend to be large and heavy, capable of handling large-scale hazards. A standard type D fire extinguisher can easily weigh 30 pounds, so be sure to store it accordingly.
Safety Considerations with Type D Extinguishers
Type D fire extinguishers are excellent for handling major industrial hazards. They are not, however, universal. Note that they are designed to handle metal-based fires, and thus are not ideal for electrical fires or blazes caused by flammable liquids. If you have multiple fire hazards in one area, be sure to have multiple types of extinguishers as well. You should also make sure that your employees are trained to use the proper equipment for the proper emergency. Dry extinguishers work within a specified temperature range, often above -40 degrees Fahrenheit but below 120 degrees Fahrenheit. It is rare to need them outside of this range, but be aware that extreme heat and cold can reduce their efficacy.
Industrial fire extinguishers are excellent solutions for factories and businesses that deal with extreme hazards. If you choose to purchase one for your building, make sure that you plan appropriately for both your space and needs.