Faculty Advisor

Notarianni, Kathy Ann


There is much speculation about the average person's ability to use a fire extinguisher effectively. This speculation includes the ability of a novice user to adequately extinguish a fire with a fire extinguisher without harming oneself or others. This study employed a random sampling of the population to gather data that described and quantified several aspects relating to use, technique, and safety. Participants were presented with an extinguisher and asked to extinguish a controlled propane fire. Overall, the results demonstrate that the subjects of the study were able to operate a fire extinguisher without prior training. In addition, participants demonstrated increased confidence and performance in effective operation of the extinguisher when exposed to just basic levels of training.


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Date Accepted

September 2012

Project Type

Interactive Qualifying Project



Advisor Department

Fire Protection Engineering