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In about every 24 seconds, the fire department deals with fire somewhere in the US. In 2019 alone, there were 2692 deaths reported by fire, flame, or smoke in the United States. The number was 2972 in the previous year, 2018.
Losing these invaluable lives is not only the cost we pay for the fire. An insane amount of property damage and financial loss does also occur for the fire every year. The property loss counted in the single year of 2019 was 12,287 billion dollars.
It doesn’t require a degree in disaster management to understand the grave threat fire poses to our lives and property. The only way to keep ourselves protected is through the best prevention mechanism set up at our place and becoming aware of any hazardous events that might initiate fire in the first place.
This article will discuss a specific type of fire that results in massive damage in non-residential areas.
The classification of fire is mainly done by the materials that cause the fire and keep it burning. The type of fire also dictates the extinguisher material. Class K fire is fueled by cooking oils, animal or vegetable fat, greases, and other flammable liquid used for commercial kitchens.
Class K fire is unique in characteristics and trickier to control. Often the fire arouses when the oil or flammable ingredients reach a high temperature. Due to the availability of flammable ingredients, it spreads very quickly.
Class K fire is a reason for special concern for restaurants, food trucks, commercial kitchens, office cafeterias, bakeries, and other food businesses. The fire poses a significant threat to the life of the kitchen staff and the patrons in the restaurants.
Preventing a fire from igniting or spreading should be the topmost concern of the authority here. But if the fire ignites, specific actions are required to stop the spread or reduce damages of the fire.
Class K-type fire extinguisher and automatic extinguishing system (AES) should be correctly installed and appropriately maintained to protect and reduce damages.
As already mentioned above, this is a trickier type of fire and requires a very specific solution. Never use water on class k fire as it would increase the fire, not decrease it. Water would help the fire to spread even rapidly.
Fire Classified as K type should only be extinguished by Class K type fire extinguisher. Class K type fire ingredients are (fuel + heat + oxygen). Once these three are combined, the fire ignites and spreads.
Class K fire extinguishers use wet chemicals to stop the spread of the fire and reduce it.The chemicals used here are potassium acetate, potassium carbonate, or potassium citrate, type alkaline mixtures.
This chemical creates a foam-like substance that isolates the fuel from oxygen and cools down the temperature. And through this process, the Class K type extinguisher quenches the fire and finishes the chances of reignition. Where almost all other fire extinguishers fail to perform, Class K type, wet chemical fire extinguisher shows impressive results.