Classes of fire

Fire is a major risk for any business. The destruction it can cause and the loss of life is immeasurable. Fire is more complex than people realise because not all fires are alike. Fires are classified by the type of fuel or material being burnt and any accelerant that may be involved.

It’s important to know the type of fire you are faced with before you attempt to extinguish it.

Unfortunately, no one extinguisher can be used on all classes of fire. It is extremely important to be aware of the type fire you and which method and equipment you should use to extinguish it.

Fires are broken up into six different classes:

Class A – solids, such as paper, textiles, wood, plastics and rubber 

Class B – flammable liquids, such as petrol, oil and paint

Class C – flammable gases, such as propane, butane and methane 

Class D – metals, such as aluminium, magnesium and titanium

Class E – electrically energised equipment

Class F – cooking oils and fats

 Feel free to contact us if you have any questions or require further information or training.

Look out for our next blog post on what methods and equipment are best used in fighting the different classes of fires.


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Disclaimer – these articles are provided to supply general safety information to people responsible for OHS in their organisation. They are general in nature and do not substitute for legal and/or professional advice. We always suggest that organisations obtain information specific to their needs. Additional information can be found at www.workcover.nsw.au