I have a confession to make: I work at a fire protection company, and have never used a fire extinguisher. In the past year since starting my current role, I have learned so much about fire extinguishers, fire alarms, kitchen fire safety, sprinkler systems, and much more. I just haven’t had the opportunity to use one yet.
Fortunately, I’ve never been in situation where a fire extinguisher has been needed. I know HOW to use a fire extinguisher, and have even created a quick video about the 4 mistakes people usually make when using a fire extinguisher.
So, I was curious: how many people know how to use a fire extinguisher? And how many people have used a fire extinguisher before?
The results are:
87.26% of people know how to use a fire extinguisher.
51.74% of people have actually used a fire extinguisher.
This test was conducted from May 2nd 2018 – May 15th 2018. We were interested in doing this research because upon “Google-ing” for a solid number, nothing came up.
Three co-workers and myself all asked their friends on Facebook and LinkedIn to obtain responses. In total, we got 259 responses.
Here’s a breakdown of the responses:
*NOTE: we did remove around 40-50 responses because they are EMS or trained firefighters, which we thought would skew the results in the favor of people answering yes to both questions. We all work at a fire protection company; so, of course, we know a lot of fire-related professionals 🙂
Here’s the post on Facebook:
People are reluctant to be honest about not knowing how to do stuff. But I’m still shocked that 12.74% said that they don’t know how to use a fire extinguisher. Factoring in honesty, and people simply not responding… and people having the opportunity to skip commenting, I would estimate the results are a little more near 25-30%.
NOTE: I’ve been to a few tradeshows with a Bullex Fire Simulator and simply asked people to put out the fire with zero instruction. Alot of people looked completely confused.
As far as actually using a fire extinguisher before, I would estimate the results are accurate. Fires happen often, but it’s not a regular occurring event. Some people have had training in the classroom or at work, so I would assume these are the majority of the “yes” responses.
Hopefully these statistics help in your research, or as a talking point in a conversation. Remember, the acronym for understanding HOW to use a fire extinguisher is PASS (pull, aim, squeeze, sweep). But as far as actually USING a fire extinguisher, that only comes with training or being in a fire-related accident.