From: Debbie M. Decker <dmdecker**At_Symbol_Here**UCDAVIS.EDU>
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] fire blankets in lab
Date: Thu, 31 Jul 2014 21:45:14 +0000
Reply-To: DCHAS-L <DCHAS-L**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU>
Message-ID: 4d5b57e13e16418d8d44103ce4139579**At_Symbol_Here**
In-Reply-To <256C03EBB2481C43AFDDCF5DE6EB566701BC08B898**At_Symbol_Here**>

I have heard suggested that fire blankets could be used to wrap someone who has stripped and used the safety shower. You could also use the fire blanket for modesty if someone needs to strip and use the safety shower.

Debbie M. Decker, CCHO
Safety Manager
Department of Chemistry
University of California, Davis
122 Chemistry
1 Shields Ave.
Davis, CA 95616

Birkett's hypothesis: "Any chemical reaction
that proceeds smoothly under normal conditions,
can proceed violently in the presence of an idiot."

-----Original Message-----
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Elmore, Kimberly A
Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2014 1:43 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] fire blankets in lab

This is very useful. Thank you for the post and discussion.

Kim Elmore
From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] on behalf of Eric Clark [erclark**At_Symbol_Here**PH.LACOUNTY.GOV]
Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2014 4:11 PM
Subject: Re: [DCHAS-L] fire blankets in lab

This is the National Fire Prevention Association's opinion on fire blankets:

Clothing fires - modify NFPA 45 Annex to add text similar to the following on fire
blankets: Fire blankets may be valuable in labs for a variety of purposes. One of those does not happen to be wrapping yourself in them to extinguish your clothing fire. In addition to trapping the heat, the fire blanket creates a chimney effect and directs the hot, toxic gases, and flames into your face, breathing zone and lungs. Someone else can get the blanket and use it to help smother the flames. Blankets can also be used for (1) shower modesty curtains, (2) wraps for after the shower, (3) a temporary stretcher, (4) to keep someone warm to avoid shock, (5) a pillow if the victim needs to be on the floor, and (6) to smother other fires.

Standard on Fire Protection for Laboratories Using Chemicals Minutes - November 15, 2012


Eric Clark, MS, CHMM, CCHO
Safety Officer, Public Health Scientist III Los Angeles County Public Health Laboratory

From: DCHAS-L Discussion List [mailto:dchas-l**At_Symbol_Here**MED.CORNELL.EDU] On Behalf Of Kennedy, Sheila
Sent: Thursday, July 31, 2014 12:40 PM
Subject: [DCHAS-L] fire blankets in lab

The DivCHAS email list talked about this 4 years ago (
It seemed to me most commenters were in agreement that using a fire blanket to wrap a victim who is standing (with clothes on fire) would likely create a chimney effect, funneling hot gases to the victim's face. Neal L. said that NFPA had not commented on this - just changed their emphasis from fire blankets to "STOP! - DROP! - ROLL!"

Does anyone have a citation for this change?
Do you have blankets in your labs?
What do you teach about fire blankets?

It worries me that the vertical fire blanket cabinets are still on the market and I've found web pages (including one University safety program and Wikipedia) still teaching the "wrap the standing victim" method.
"Prudent Practices" recommends a fire blanket as a last resort, but doesn't give much explanation.

Sheila M. Kennedy, C.H.O.
Safety Coordinator | Teaching Laboratories Chemistry & Biochemistry |University of California, San Diego
9500 Gilman Dr. | La Jolla, CA 92093-0303
(858) 534 - 0221 | fax (858) 534 - 7687 s1kennedy**At_Symbol_Here** |<>

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