Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 37

chemical reaction component of a fire.
This type of extinguisher is most effective
on Class B and Class C fires. However,
larger clean agent extinguishers are listed
for Class A, B, and C fires.

Dry powder
Similar to dry chemical extinguishers,
dry powder separates fuel from oxygen
or removes the heat element of a fire by
smothering. Dry powder extinguishers
are used on Class D (combustible metal
fires) only. They will not be effective on
any other type of fire class.

Water mist
Water mist extinguishers work by
taking away the heat element of a fire.
You should mainly use this extinguisher
for Class A fires, however, if listed it is
safe to use the water mist extinguisher
for Class C fires as well. Water mist
extinguishers that are tested to ANSI/
UL 8 and ANSI/UL 711 are safe to be
used on fires with electrically charged
equipment involved because it will
not deliver a shock to the operator
back through the discharge stream.
Water mist extinguishers disperse very
fine water sprays (i.e. water mist). The
supersonic nozzle disperses microscopic
"dry" water mist particles to suppress
fires and extinguish burning materials.
The particles are attracted by the fire,

cool the fire, and reduce oxygen content.
The small water droplets allow the water
mist to control, suppress, or extinguish
fires by 1) cooling both the flame and
surrounding gases by evaporation,
2) creating the immediate evaporation
of the small water droplet that creates
steam that displaces oxygen, and
3) attenuating radiant heat by the small
droplets themselves.

What to use-and what not to
use-in operating rooms
With a better understanding of
the types of fires, the classification
of extinguishers, and how the
different extinguisher mediums work
to extinguish a fire, we can move on to
selecting the right choices of A-, B-, or
C-class fires extinguishers in ORs.
Without a doubt it can be said
that a multipurpose dry chemical fire
extinguisher rated for Class A, B, or C fires
should not be used in an OR as they will
leave a significant amount of residue. The
dry chemical used (monoammonium
phosphate) is highly corrosive, and any
electronics in the immediate area would
eventually need to be replaced. In a dry
chemical fire extinguisher discharge,
microscopic powder disperses widely.
With average particle sizes of 20 microns,
it can be suspended in the air and will
eventually settle on all surfaces.

Water mist extinguishers are
currently listed for Classes A and C,
although under the right conditions
and use, could be used to put out small
Class B (flammable liquid) fires. The
effectiveness of a water mist depends on
its spray characteristics, which include
the droplet-size distribution, flux density,
and spray dynamics, with respect to the
fire scenario, such as the shielding of the
fuel, fire size, and ventilation conditions
as well as operator experience. In my
experience water mist is a very effective
fire extinguishing agent in small
compartmentalized fires that would
benefit from the smothering effect and
oxygen displacement of evaporation.
Because of the small droplet size, a water
mist is not as effective for "wetting" of
combustible materials, although you
will get some minimal wetting. You
might as well use a Class A pressurized
water extinguisher with sterile deionized
water or even a saline squeeze bottle
for a "wetting" effect to prevent fire
propagation with drape materials.
CO2 extinguishers are for Class B
and C fires. Although they can put
out small Class A fires, they may not
suppress efficiently due to inability
to displace oxygen, particularly in an
oxygen-enriched environment such as
an OR. In addition, improper CO2 use can
result in frostbite or similar hypothermic
www.ashe.org 37


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Inside ASHE - Fall 2017

Letter from the president
What’s new
Pop quiz
The measurement of a health care facility manager: How do you define success?
Creating a program to identify and monitor pressure dependent spaces
Critical considerations for specifying a building automation system for health care
Bright ideas: LED renovation at Boulder Community Health
Selecting the right fire extinguisher for operating rooms
Still battling reheat energy in hospitals: Short- and long-term ideas for hospitals’ biggest energy use
The financial impact of variable speed ventilation controls in hospital kitchens
Data driven culture fuels University of Florida Health’s success in energy and operational optimization
Energy management in a critical access hospital: How Barnesville Hospital reduced energy consumption by 39 percent
Value analysis: Improving operating margin through cost savings
Member spotlight
Advertisers’ index
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Intro
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - bellyband1
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - bellyband2
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - cover1
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - cover2
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 3
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 4
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 5
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 6
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 7
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 8
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Letter from the president
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - What’s new
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 11
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Pop quiz
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 13
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 14
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 15
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 16
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 17
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - The measurement of a health care facility manager: How do you define success?
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 19
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Creating a program to identify and monitor pressure dependent spaces
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 21
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 22
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 23
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Critical considerations for specifying a building automation system for health care
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 25
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 26
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 27
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Bright ideas: LED renovation at Boulder Community Health
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 29
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 30
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 31
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 32
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 33
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Selecting the right fire extinguisher for operating rooms
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 35
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 36
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 37
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 38
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 39
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 40
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 41
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Still battling reheat energy in hospitals: Short- and long-term ideas for hospitals’ biggest energy use
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 43
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 44
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 45
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - The financial impact of variable speed ventilation controls in hospital kitchens
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 47
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 48
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 49
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 50
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 51
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Data driven culture fuels University of Florida Health’s success in energy and operational optimization
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 53
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 54
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 55
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Energy management in a critical access hospital: How Barnesville Hospital reduced energy consumption by 39 percent
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 57
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Value analysis: Improving operating margin through cost savings
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 59
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Member spotlight
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - Advertisers’ index
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 62
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - cover3
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - cover4
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - outsert1
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - outsert2
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 70
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 71
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 72
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 73
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 74
Inside ASHE - Fall 2017 - 75
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