After a Fire
People are your first priority. Deal with any medical (including psychological) needs first. Make sure that anybody who needs to know that you are alright is informed.
Then you need to check for the damage to the boat, make sure it is secure, and then clean up the mess. There are two aspects to the damage caused by a fire:
- The damage actually caused by the fire
- The damage caused by the attempts to put it out – primarily caused by the fire extinguishers.
We took on the marine distributorship of the Go Earth Marine Fire Extinguishers precisely because they create far less mess and damage. This is especially important in the confined space of a boat.
The next section explains how to clean up. Note that powder fire extinguishers are particular problematic, as the powder goes everywhere, is potentially toxic, and acts as a laxative. Foam fire extinguisher chemicals are carcinogenic.
Cleaning up after discharging a fire extinguisher
Before you start the clean-up, ensure that the area is free of hazards. Then photograph and document everything and immediately contact your insurance company. Once the insurance gives the go-ahead, the clean-up can start.
|Extinguisher Type||Protective Clothing Needed|
|Go Earth Marine Fire Extinguisher||Dust mask.|
|Powder extinguisher||Dust mask, gloves, goggles. The chemicals in a powder fire extinguisher can be an irritant to lungs, eyes and throat. It must not be breathed in.|
|Foam, Wet Chemical||Impermeable Gloves, goggles. The chemicals in foam fire extinguishers can be carcinogenic.|
Cleaning Measures – these should only be done when the fire is completely extinguished and there are no other hazards. These measures below only include the effect of the fire extinguishers, and do not include cleaning up the direct results of the fire – that will require additional cleaning.
|Cleaning Measures – these should only be done when the fire is completely extinguished and there are no other hazards. These measures below only include the effect of the fire extinguishers, and do not include cleaning up the direct results of the fire – that will require additional cleaning.|
|Go Earth Marine Fire Extinguisher||1. Wear the recommended protective equipment
2. Open the area to allow complete ventilation
3. There should be little or no residue. If there is any, then gently wipe down all surfaces and wash any cutlery and crockery
|Foam, Water additive, wet Chemical fire extinguishers||
|Powder fire extinguisher||