Chapter 2 X Boating Law, Navigational Rules and Navigational Aids
How To Use a Fire Extinguisher All extinguishers must be readily accessible, preferably not stowed next to common fire sources. It is recommended that they be attached to the boat. Before using portable extinguishers, read the instructions. Never use a foam extinguisher on electrical fires, because these extinguish ers contain water and you might be electrocuted. Never try an extinguisher to see if it works properly—the valves may not reseal and the extinguishing material may gradually leak. After using an extinguisher, recharge it before using it again. Check your fire extinguisher at least once every six months for the pressure level and signs of powder on the nozzle. If the extinguisher contains a dry chemical extinguishing material, turn the extinguisher end-to-end. If the chemical is packed, shake it or hit the bottom with your hand to loosen it. The following chart describes the required fire extinguisher type by boat size. It includes the newer UL-listed equivalents. Remember, disposable fire extinguishers must be replaced no later than 12 years from date of manufacture.
USING A FIRE EXTINGUISHER
P - Pull pin
A - Aim at base of fire
I N S T R
C T I O N S
S - Squeeze handle
S - Sweep side to side using short
bursts, a half-second to 1 second each
WEBSITE For more information about fire extinguishers , visit dbw.parks. ca.gov/FireExtinguisher
TABLE A – FIRE EXTINGUISHER REQUIREMENTS
Without fixed extinguishing system in machinery space
With fixed extinguishing system in machinery space
Less than 26 ft.
1 B-I, 5-B, or 10-B
26 ft. to under 40 ft.
2 B-I, 5-B, 10-B or 1 B-II or 20-B
1 B-I, 5-B, or 10-B
40 ft. to 65 ft.
3 B-I, 5-B, 10-B or 1 B-II, 20-B AND 1 B-I, 5-B or 10-B 2 B-I, 5-B, or 10-B or 1 B-II or 20-B
TABLE B – FIRE EXTINGUISHER CHARACTERISTICS
UL Listed extinguishers of the type and weight shown below may be selected to meet the type and size requirements for the corresponding Coast Guard classification (see Table A). For example, if a Coast Guard Type B, Size I extinguisher was required, a 2 lb. dry chemical extinguisher, 5-B would be one of the new equivalents. The following specifies only the minimum net agent weight. A larger extinguisher such as a 20-B would be acceptable.
Coast Guard Classes B-I B-II
UL-Listed Equivalent 5-B 10-B
Dry Chemical (lb.) 2 10
Carbon Dioxide (lb.) 4 15
Foam (gal.) 1.25 2.5
California Course for Safe Boating
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