The National Fire Protection Association records an average of 6,000 structure fires in health care facilities each year. Nursing facilities and hospitals make up 80 percent of those fires. As a CNA that will most likely find work in a nursing home or general hospital, it is important to be aware of preventative measures as well as proper responses to structure fires in health care facilities.

Classification of Fires:

Class A: Produced by combustion of solid combustible materials that are not metals, such as wood, paper, cloth, trash, and plastics.

Class B: Oil or gas fires caused by ignition of an nonmetal in a liquid sate such as flammable liquids like gasoline, oil, acetone or flammable gases.

Class C: Electrical fires caused by energized electrical equipment.

Class D: Fire caused by combustion of metals such as potassium, sodium, aluminum, and magnesium. These fires are usually found in laboratories and will require special extinguishing agents, such as Metal-X foam, to dispel.

Common Locations of Fires in Health Care Facilities:

  1. Areas of the facility with heavy electrical equipment.

  2. A patients room.

  3. The Pathology Lab, or any similar space with inflammable and explosive items.

  4. Any Battery Banks/Charging stations.

Remember Fires only need two things to Burn: Fuel & Oxygen.

Be constantly aware of your surroundings, and be sure to REMOVE the resident from immediate danger!


In case of a fire, remember to RACE:

R - Remove resident from danger.

A - Activate alarm

C  - Confine area of fire, shut doors and windows.

E - Extinguish the fire if possible.


Remember to PASS when using a fire extinguisher: 

P - Pull the pin.

A - Aim the hose at the base of the fire.

S - Squeeze the handle down

S - Sweep the hose back and forth towards the base of the fire.

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