Of all the threats to your home and property, fires are without a doubt the most life threatening. No matter how new or modern your home is, it is extremely important that you are continually practicing fire preparedness and fire prevention.
The American Red Cross’ 7 Ways to Prepare for a Home Fire is a great place to start. They are listed here with some additional tips ( in italics ) from your friends at Restore More!
1. Install the right number of smoke alarms. Test them once a month and replace the batteries at least once a year. For less than $10, you can get a battery tester to test your batteries. Get more information on Fire Safety Equipment Testing & Maintenance from the American Red Cross.
2. Teach children what smoke alarms sound like and what to do when they hear one. Additionally, teach them what smoke or fire smells like.
3. Ensure that all household members know two ways to escape from every room of your home and know the family meeting spot outside of your home. It’s also a good idea for parents to teach their kids how to use these escape routes, since they often require climbing out of a window and onto a flat or low-pitched roof.
4. Establish a family emergency communications plan and ensure that all household members know who to contact if they cannot find one another.
5. Practice escaping from your home at least twice a year. Press the smoke alarm test button or yell “fire” to alert everyone that they must get out.
6. Make sure everyone knows how to call 9-1-1. Make sure everyone has access to a cell phone if the landline is not working. Better yet, be sure to use a cell so that you are able to exit the house or office while you are calling.
7. Teach household members to STOP, DROP and ROLL if their clothes should catch on fire.
More Fire Prevention & Preparedness Tips from RestoreMore
- Teach your children to treat water damage as a potential fire risk. Tell them WATER + ELECTRIC = FIRE!
- Talk to your neighbors about establishing a fire preparedness plan. If there is a Neighborhood Watch already in place, teach everyone to look for warning signs. As part of this plan, ask each neighbor close by if you can be a designated safe zone/meeting spot in the event of a fire.
- Test and check your electronics regularly, including all appliances. Crock pots and popcorn poppers over 20 years old should probably be replaced.
- Check all of your wires especially if they are in proximity to any potential water damage spots. The best place to start is the basement.
Frequently Asked Questions