California teen invents device that puts out fires automatically

Hometown Heroes

(NewsNation Now) — As wildfires rage in the West, a California teenager is trying to help families save their homes and their belongings.

Arul Mathur is a high school senior and the inventor of the “Fire Active Canister Extinguisher,” also known as FACE. It’s designed to protect homes from fires — even when people aren’t there.

Mathur told NewsNation it incorporates a few already-existing technologies.

“FACE is essentially the combination of the everyday commercial sprinkler technology that you’d find in say, the roof of your office building, compacted into a portable format,” he said.

Mathur went on to explain what activates the device.

“This red glycerin bulb right here is set 155 degrees Fahrenheit. And when that happens, all the pressurized fire retardant within the canister right here can actually flow through and disperse in a four to five-foot radius for this particular size,” he said.

Mathur said it’s best to have a few devices strategically placed around the exterior of your home to protect against wildfires.

He said he was inspired to help after moving from New Jersey to California in 2012. Shortly after, he was forced to evacuate his home due to a 2019 wildfire.

More than 100 wildfires are currently burning across the U.S., most of them are in the West.

The Dixie Fire, the largest in California history, has now destroyed 550 homes and also wiped out the small, rural town of Greenville. Some of the evacuated residents have returned to their properties only to find ashes and twisted metal. The blaze has been burning for a month now.

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