40 years ago the average person had 17 minutes to escape from their homes in an event of a fire. Due to the higher use of synthetic materials, our homes and furniture are more flammable leaving us with an average of three minutes to escape.
It’s never a bad idea to review fire safety tips with your family. Cooking, heating, electrical malfunction, clothes dryers and smoking are some of the top causes of house fires. We have all heard the importance of installing and maintaining a smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detectors. However, did you know a closed door can be an effective barrier against levels of carbon monoxide, smoke and flames?
In honor of National Fire Prevention month, we are sharing a few helpful tips that are great to follow in your everyday life.
- Check all electrical appliances, cords and outlets. Make sure they are all in good working condition, without loose or frayed cords or plugs. Do not overload the electric socket.
- Use caution with portable heaters. Keep the heaters at least three feet away from flammable objects. Make sure the heater is placed away from children and pets that could accidently knock it over.
- Be aware in the kitchen. Cooking is one of the leading causes of house fires. Practice safe cooking habits by turning pot handles in to avoid being knocked over, supervise children while in the kitchen, and avoid putting out grease fires with water, (turn off the heat, cover your pot and add baking soda to smother the fire out.
- Check you lint screen before drying clothes.
- Check the fire place. Burn only wood in the home and never leave the fire burning unattended. Keep the fireplace clean and covered with a screen to help keep sparks contained.
- Use candles safely. Keep candles out of reach of children, away from curtains and furniture, and extinguish the flame before you leave the room.
- Beware of cigarettes. Take caution when smoking at home. Most fires begin when ashes or butts fall into couches, chairs, or in the bed.
- Be aware of holiday dangers. Inspect the lights yearly for worn or frayed cords. Watch for trip hazards. If you have a live Christmas tree, be sure to keep it watered daily.
Keep your family safe – make sure you have an updated safety plan in place. The National Fire Protection Association has many great tools you can use to help teach your children about fire safety.