Fires don’t just happen. There are a lot of measures you can take to help ensure that a fire doesn’t start. Here are a few important things you can do:
- Install a smoke detector on every level of your home and in the garage. Check it monthly and replace the batteries when necessary.
- Have an electrician look at the wiring in your house. Make sure circuits are not overloaded.
- Have all alternative heating units, such as wood stoves and space heaters, checked by an expert.
- Keep matches and lighters out of reach and away from children.
- Never smoke in bed.
- Be aware of the dangers from smoking in overstuffed furniture.
No house can be 100 percent fire proof. Fire officials emphasize there are some basic things you should do to prepare for a fire.
- Determine at least two ways to escape from every room in your home.
- Purchase an approved chain ladder to use to climb out of rooms above the first floor, and practice using it.
- Select a location where everyone could meet after escaping the house.
- Discuss what you would do about family pets in the event of a fire.
- Know how to call for emergency assistance.
When fire strikes:
- Crawl low under smoke to escape. This should be practiced beforehand to prepare you for an actual fire.
- Close the door when you exit a room, and feel closed doors before you enter a room. A hot door or doorknob usually means the room is on fire.
- If your clothes are on fire, drop to the floor and roll to smother and put out the flames.
- Get everyone out quickly, and then call for emergency assistance.
- Know how to give accurate directions to your house when you call for assistance.