Gasoline as a Fire Hazard
The most commonly known flammable liquid is gasoline. It
has a flash point of about -50° F (-65° C). The ignition
temperature is about 495° E (232° C), a comparatively
Burning gasoline has a temperature above 1500° E (945°
C). Therefore, it can heat objects in the fire area
above its ignition temperature. To prevent reignition
after extinguishment, the agent should be applied for
sufficient time to allow hot objects in the fire area to
cool below the ignition temperature of the gasoline.
The flammable range of gasoline is only 1.3% to 6%.
Gasoline vapors are heavier than air. They tend to flow
downhill and downwind from liquid gasoline, making it
possible for explosive mixtures to collect - in low
points such as pipe trenches or terrain depressions.
If the amount of oxygen in a given atmosphere is
reduced from its normal 21 per cent to 14 per cent, by
diluting with carbon dioxide, most petroleum products
cannot burn. As a result, a gasoline fire can be
"suffocated" by diluting the atmosphere with an inert
It is dangerous to use water in a solid stream on a
gasoline fire because it may spatter the fuel or raise
its level in a container so it overflows.