Fire Prevention Safety Tips
According to the National Fire Protection Association, a home fire was reported every 85 seconds during 2010 – a total of 369,500 for the year – causing 13,350 injuries and 2,640 deaths. What can you do to reduce your risk for a home fire?
- Planning & Practice: The size of a fire can double every 30 seconds, leaving as little as two minutes to escape once an alarm has sounded, so acting quickly and precisely is critical. Develop a fire-escape plan and review it with family members. Make a map of the residence, marking two ways out of each room, such as a door and a window. Note where fire extinguishes are located. Select a spot outside and in front of a residence where all should meet in the event of a fire. Practice the fire-escape plan twice a year and post it in a visible spot like a refrigerator. Also, discuss fire dos and don’ts, including never exiting a door if it feels hot and staying low to avoid smoke inhalation.
- Proactive Walk-Through: Do a walk-through of your residence and perform a proactive safety check. Foremost, test the function and batteries of smoke alarms. Make sure outlets are not overloaded with multiple plug-extenders or extension cords. Use certified, surge-protected power strips and follow wattage guidelines. Look at electrical wires and cords on appliances, devices, lamps, etc. to ensure they’re not damaged or worn. Be sure that wires and cords have not been run under carpets or heavy items, behind hot appliances or tacked up with staples or pins.
- Be Aware of High Risks: Cooking is the #1 cause of home fires and related injuries, so always keep an extinguisher close by when cooking or grilling. Also, be on guard against particularly high risks. For instance, never leave burning candles unattended, under the attention of a child, or, leave portable heating devices on while you’re away from home.