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Safety and Savings Tips For October 2013, from All Safety Products, Inc.


The ABCs of fire extinguishers

You're busy working when a co-worker notices smoke billowing out from behind some machinery. As you get closer, you see flames. You grab the nearest fire extinguisher and train it on the fire. Within minutes, the fire is under control, and you're a hero.

Sound too good to be true? It probably is. For instance, what if you couldn't locate a fire extinguisher quickly? What if you didn't know how to use it? What if you grabbed the wrong extinguisher, and the fire got bigger instead of going out?

The first step in fighting any fire is being able to locate a fire extinguisher in a hurry. Do you know where all the extinguishers in your work area are located?

And then, of course, you need to know about the different kinds of fire extinguishers and what they're used for. Using the wrong extinguisher can actually cause a fire to spread faster. Fires are categorized into four main classes, and all extinguishers are labeled to tell you which class of fire they're designed for.

Class A fires involve wood, paper, trash, rags, or cloth. The corresponding extinguisher controls fires by wetting down and cooling the flames.

Class B fires involve gases, grease, or flammable liquids, such as gasoline, oil, paint, and solvents. The extinguisher cuts off oxygen or reduces flames.

Class C fires involve electrical equipment and wiring. Instead of using water, which conducts electricity and poses a dangerous electrocution hazard, these extinguishers contain carbon dioxide or a dry chemical. WARNING: Never use water on an electrical fire!

Class D fires involve combustible metals, such as aluminum, sodium, magnesium, or zinc.

Combination ABC or BC extinguishers are used for fires that involve combinations of the A, B, and C classes.

Ladder Safety Checklist

Know where you stand or you'll probably fall!

Ladders come in different types and lengths, designed for different uses and rated to hold different weights. When you select a ladder for a job, be sure it's taller than the point you want to reach and is rated to hold you and anything you might carry. Inspect a ladder carefully before use. Don't use one that has any broken or missing parts.

And keep these safety rules in mind:
  • Never use a metal ladder around live electricity.
  • Set a ladder on a firm, level surface.
  • Set an extension ladder with its feet parallel to the surface it leans against. Angle the ladder so that its feet are a distance from the wall equal to one-fourth its length. For example, set the feet of a 12-foot ladder 3 feet from the wall.
  • Don't lean a ladder up against a window, window sash, unlocked door, or anything like a stack of boxes.
  • Secure the bottom of the ladder, or have someone hold it.
  • Wear shoes with clean, nonskid, non-leather soles when working on a ladder.
  • Never allow more than one person on a ladder at a time.
  • Face the ladder and hold the side rails as you climb up or down.
  • Carry tools and materials with a belt, rope, or hoist, not in your hands.
  • Stand centered on the ladder. Don't stretch or lean to the side.
  • Work with one hand on the ladder for support.
  • Move slowly and cautiously on a ladder.
  • Don't move it while you're on it.
  • Stand no higher than four steps or rungs from the ladder top-two for a stepladder.

All Safety Products provides a wide variety of ladder safety products for your purchase. 

When and How To Fight a Fire

Fire safety in the workplace involves knowledge, skill, and judgment on your part.

For example, you need to know when to try to fight a fire and when to evacuate. The general rule is that you should use a fire extinguisher to fight small, contained fires such as in a wastebasket, but evacuate if the fire is larger or out of control.

Don't be a hero: Even if you know how to use a fire extinguisher, never try to be a hero when it comes to fighting fires that are too big or spreading quickly. In that case, sound the alarm, evacuate and help others to evacuate, and let the firefighters handle the job.

On the other hand, when a fire is small and contained, your quick action can save the day. That's why everyone should know how to use a fire extinguisher. The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) advises people to remember the word PASS. The letters stand for the steps to take when using a fire extinguisher:

P ull the pin on the unit.

A im at the base of the fire, standing about 8 feet away.

S queeze the handle to release the extinguishing agent.

S weep from side to side until the fire is out.

NFPA also warns that you should never turn your back on a fire, even if it looks as if it is out. It could flare up again, so you might need to continue spraying. Make sure you have an escape route behind you in case you can't put the fire out and have to evacuate.

All Safety Products provides a wide variety of fire extinguishers for your purchase.

Hear Are the Answers - Important Information about Hearing Protection

Occupational noise is a leading cause of hearing loss. Here are some workers' thoughts and concerns about hearing protection, along with some good advice.

My hearing protection devices (HPD) are uncomfortable. Check with your supervisor to see if your hearing protection fits properly. Remember, you can remove your HPD when you finish work, but hearing loss is permanent.

I've been doing this job for years. I'm used to the noise. The only way to get used to noise is to lose more and more of your hearing.

If I wear hearing protection, I won't be able to hear people talking to me on the job. Not true. HPDs will actually help you to hear normal sounds because they reduce the effect of very loud noise.

I won't be able to hear sounds that might signal danger. Again, not true. You'll still be able to hear the forklift bearing down on you or a change in the sound of machinery that might signal trouble.

I've heard that earmuffs are better than earplugs. Every situation and every user is different. Your supervisor will help you choose the HPD that's right for you and your work environment.

I'm concerned that earplugs can give me infections or damage my ears. You have nothing to worry about on either account if you're careful to keep your HPDs clean and don't push them so far into your ear that you feel discomfort.

All Safety Products provides a wide variety of hearing protection products for your purchase.

About All Safety Products

We are all about trying to save you money when we are able to. It is our shipping policy to only charge you the actual shipping/handling costs. Sometimes there is a shipping error on our website.  We do review all orders for accuracy and pleasantly surprise our customers when we notify them of an adjustment in their favor. We make money on products, not shipping!