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What Type Of Fire Extinguisher Is Required On A Boat

For boat owners, the risk of a fair may sometimes seem laughable. After all, your boat is parked in the water. Why would you ever need a fire extinguisher onboard?

Besides capsizing and sinking, the second most significant threat to a vessel is fire. If you let your hubris get the better of you and you fail to equip your boat with a fire extinguisher, you may be asking for danger. Also, you may violate local boat regulations, which could result in a hefty fine.

What Type Of Fire Extinguisher Is Required On A Boat?

The type of fire extinguisher required for your boat varies. Boat fire extinguisher requirements depend on the length of your vessel and whether it has a motor. Typically, the larger your boat, the more fire extinguishers you will be required to have.

Does the Type of Boat Matter?

Yes! Pleasure boats are the most common type of civilian naval vessel, and they typically range in size from 20 to 70 feet.

Smaller crafts, under 20 feet in length and without a motor, do not need a fire extinguisher if every person on board is wearing a lifejacket or flotation device.

Vessels up to 26 feet in length that do have a motor require at least one B-I size (5BC) fire extinguisher.

Motorized boats that fall between 26 and 40 feet long are required to carry two B-I extinguishers or one B-II (10BC) extinguisher. 

Vessels more massive than 40 feet in length must carry at least three B-I fire extinguishers or a combination of B-I and B-II extinguishers.

When deciding on a fire extinguisher for a boat, it’s essential to understand the different types of extinguishers.

What Are the Different Types of Fire Extinguishers for Boats?

Portable fire extinguishers are always the best option when equipping your boat. They can be installed with minimal previous experience and are generally easier to maintain than standard extinguishers.

When searching for a portable fire extinguisher for your boat, you can become quickly confused by new and complicated terminology and classification systems. Don’t be!

There most popular types of fire extinguishers are:

  • ABC extinguishers. These use a dry chemical to handle Class A, Class B, and Class C fires, which is why they’re called ABC extinguishers. These are best for treating fire with multiple types of sources.
  • CO2 extinguishers. Carbon dioxide extinguishers kill fire by removing any oxygen around the flames. Flames need oxygen to breathe, and CO2 extinguishers choke them out.
  • Pressured water and foam extinguishers. These extinguishers are accessible for kitchens, where there is often hot oil, grease, and other flammable materials. It works by applying a pressurized spray of water and reactive foam to isolate fires and prevent them from spreading.
Fighting Fire With Water Foam and Powder

“Fighting Fire With Water, Foam and Powder” by Theen Moy Licensed Under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

Final Thoughts

To decide which type of fire extinguisher is most appropriate for your boat, it’s best to consult with a fire protection company.

If you’re feeling uncertain about installing your fire extinguishers, an experienced technician can help. Installation services are affordable, quick, and can keep you up-to-date with your maintenance schedule.

Having a professional’s help not only ensures that your installation goes smoothly but can also help keep financially-draining fines and unhappy accidents at bay!


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