In Case of Fire: Home Safety Dos and Don’ts

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Fire home safety is not an issue to be considered lightly. A fire in your home can be dangerous and deadly. Being prepared in case of a fire in your home can save your belongings and you life. Below are a few things to do and avoid when planning for the possibility of a fire.

Do Plan Ahead

Having a fire safety plan for you and your family members is the most important measure you can take to keep everyone safe. Take a look at all possible exit routes and make note of the situations in which they would be best used. After creating several plans, discuss the possible routes with other family members. It may even be a good idea to walk through your residence and show the exact pattern for the different routes.

If you live or sleep on the second floor or higher you may need to purchase a fire ladder to be used should escape out the window be the only option. These ladders are easily storable underneath beds and are available at most home improvement stores. After purchasing the ladder, read the instructions for its use and share those instructions with other family members that may need to use the same or a different ladder for escape through a window.

After identifying several exit routes, try to make several dry runs of the routes. Family members or roommates should be aware of the different options and how to make use of them depending on the circumstances. Time how long it takes for everyone to exit the residence after being notified of the fire. It may be necessary to do several dry runs to ensure that all residents are able to exit the apartment during a fire the best way possible. Repeat these dry runs at least once a year.

Do Check Fire Safety Equipment

Make regular inspections of fire alarms, sprinklers and fire extinguishers. Fire alarm batteries should be changed yearly and the alarm itself tested at least once a year. Sprinkler heads should be checked every six months for signs of damage that may indicate improper functioning. Fire extinguishers should be inspected every year and exchanged for new extinguishers every two years. Inform your landlord if you notice that any of these items are damaged.

Don’t Create Avoidable Fire Hazards

Candles, space heaters or appliances with frayed or broken cords are extremely hazardous and can potentially cause a fire. Not using these items severely reduces chance of a fire. Never leave candles burning in an unused room, leave the oven or stove running unattended or use space heaters overnight when you will be unable to tell if they are getting to hot and potentially becoming dangerous. Anything with an exposed heating surface is a fire hazard and should be treated with caution and used in the safest manner possible.

Don’t Ignore Fire Potential

The biggest mistake most families make is ignoring the potential of a fire in their household. Even though you may behave in the most cautious manners your neighbors may not, which makes planning and preparation essential

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