The Basics of Fire Blankets
Fire blankets are typically made from flame-resistant materials such as fiberglass . Their primary purpose is to extinguish small fires by cutting off the fire's oxygen supply. However, their design and composition suggest potential benefits beyond just smothering flames.
Filtering Smoke: A Closer Look
While fire blankets are not specifically engineered as smoke filters, their dense and flame-resistant fabric can act as a barrier against smoke particles. When properly used, a fire blanket can be employed not only to extinguish flames but also to create a temporary barrier between individuals and smoke-filled air.
Using a Fire Blanket for Smoke Mitigation
Protective Wrap: In the event of a fire, if escape routes are filled with smoke, a fire blanket can be used as a protective wrap. By covering the nose and mouth with the blanket, individuals can reduce their inhalation of harmful smoke particles.
Barrier Creation: Deploying a fire blanket strategically can help create a makeshift barrier against smoke, providing a clear air pocket for breathing. This technique can be particularly useful in confined spaces or during evacuation.
Limitations to Consider
While fire blankets can offer some level of protection against smoke, it's essential to understand their limitations. They are not designed to be a substitute for dedicated smoke masks or respirators, especially in prolonged or severe smoke exposure situations.