About Us

Put It Out seeks to reduce the impact of fires that have devastated families in informal settlements and townships in South Africa and across the globe by empowering residents with the world’s most cost-effective and safe fire extinguisher.
Our vision – to help save the lives of people in rural communities in South Africa and eventually everyone around the world.

Our Story

History

Toli Altounis first started his journey supplying snacks and amakipkip (flavoured popcorn) across the country and into rural areas, this is where he became more aware of the everyday struggle in informal settlements.

Inspiration

The concept of the fire extinguisher came after a fire broke out in the community of Khayelitsha in 2015. Our product is designed to be the first response, to small fires, as most big fires start off small. This is because most shacks are built with highly combustible materials, have no access to running water and because they are built close to each other there is no infrastructure for fire trucks to access the area and effectively combat fires.
We wanted this product to require no maintenance, unlike other fire extinguishers on the market. After we realised that there weren’t any cheap and reliable fire-protection products available in South Africa, we decided to do some market research. What we found was more alarming than we first imagined.

The Product

Overview

The Put It Out mini fire extinguisher is designed to save lives by providing communities with a tool to combat small fires. The product can be used by anyone including small children. It has been tested by FireLab, part of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, and is market-ready. The fire extinguisher is produced in Strydom Park, Gauteng, in a small factory that employs people with disabilities.

Ingredients

The non-toxic, safe, cost effective and easy-to-use mini fire extinguisher is a sealed, durable pouch filled with acetic acid, otherwise known as vinegar. Suspended in the liquid is an airtight capsule filled with sodium hydrogen carbonate (aka baking soda), which is also safe if it comes into contact with the
user’s skin or eyes.

Fire Classification

The fire extinguisher is designed as a 1st response for small fires – Class A and B fires (Textiles and flammable liquids respectively). Put It Out is unable to put out cooking oil, fatty fires and live electrical power. Also note that the fire extinguisher is:
  • A patented product (SA Pat No. 2015/09350)
  • Independently tested by Firelab (Part of CSIR)

How to Use The Fire Extinguisher

The Put It Out Mini Fire Extinguisher was designed to be as simple to use as possible.

Step 1

Break seal and open lid

Step 2

Pop capsule inside pouch

Step 3

Spray contents onto fire

Play Video

Put It Out Used In Different Scenarios

Paraffin

Cigarettes

Candles

Our Team

Alina

Packager

Andrea

Assistant

Toli

Founder

Phillis

Packager

Colin

Packager

In the Press

Put It Out has been featured in various news articles

  • 3rd Place Winner – 2019 SAB Foundation Social Innovation and Disability Empowerment Award Finalist (R750 000) – as well as the accompanying video
  • TimesLive – Putting out a fire was never easier, thanks to SA man’s spark of genius
  • YOU Magazine – My mission is to stomp out home fires
  • The Star Early Edition – Putting out fires
  • CGTN – Business Channel video