Fire safety is important to any household. Smoke alarms always should be functional and inspected regularly. The same goes for fire extinguishers. However, a fire blanket does not have an expiration date. It has no batteries to check every six months. A Fire blanket is an often overlooked but useful component to any home fire-safety kit.
If You Can't Stand the Heat...
A fire blanket is best kept in the kitchen. It can be used to smother a grease fire on the hob or the kitchen trash. It also can be used as a protective wrap around your body if the fire has already grown out of control. It can be used to smother flames on a person who has caught fire. Simply wrap the victim in the blanket and roll them on the ground.
A fire blanket should be kept near any potential flame source. Along with the kitchen, fire blankets also should be kept near wood stoves, fireplaces and outdoor grills--any place there might be an errant spark, ember or sudden flame.
Types of Fire Blankets
Fire blankets are made of various materials. Most common are the wool or fibreglass blankets. Nomex/Kevlar blends are also available. There are no great differences between materials, and any fire blanket should be replaced once it has been used.
Instructions for Use
The Country Fire Authority (CFA) in the state of Victoria, Australia, provides the following steps for using a fire blanket: --Pull the tabs to release the blanket. --Shake it open and, holding the tabs, cover hands with the blanket ends. --Place the blanket carefully over the vessel to contain the fire. The source of heat should then be turned off, and the fire blanket left in place until cool and the fire brigade called. Under no circumstances should the blanket be lifted until completely cool.
Prices range from about £19 for an infant fire blanket to about £65 for the professional/EMS size blanket, according to product websites. The average price is around £32 for the typical household fire blanket.