How to prepare for a house fire? It’s simple, and important. Simply put, house fires cause devastation. A Fire Department responds to a structure fire every 24 seconds in the United States. We’re here to help.
House fires can happen any time of the day, caused by a multitude of possibilities. However, there are ways that you can protect your family and loved ones. By using precautionary measures, you can save yourself from some of the stress and heartbreak that comes along with fire damages. Here are 10 ways to prepare for an emergency now:
- Check the battery in your smoke detectors
- Replace smoke detector batteries twice a year.
Precautionary measures include checking the battery in your smoke detectors. It is recommended that you replace the batteries in your smoke alarms every 6 months (when you change your clocks). Since sensors will wear out in smoke detectors over time, it is also recommended that you replace the entire smoke detector in your home every ten years. Test the alarms, and make sure the children in your home understand what the alarm sounds like, and what it means. Store important paperwork and valuables in a fire safe box. Never take the time to search for valuables in the occurrence of a fire, get out immediately.
- Put an escape plan into place.
- Draw up a blueprint of your home, indicating the closest exits in each area of the home.
- Go over this blueprint with everyone living in the home, study the blueprint and keep in mind the possibilities of fire starting in each area.
It is important to know the exits in your home, whether it be doors or windows. If you live in an apartment building, NEVER use the elevator, take the stairs instead, and leave immediately after hearing the alarm. Practice the escape plan with your loved ones, if there was a fire in your home, the chances of everyone escaping become greater with practice. Practice by crawling low underneath the smoke. When going from one room to another, feel the door with the back of your hand, never the doorknob. If the door is hot, do NOT enter. Always close doors behind you, as fires feed off of oxygen. It’s recommended that you practice this escape plan twice a year.
- Make sure that the children in your home know how to dial 9-1-1, and that they know the address of your home.
- Choose a trusted neighbor that the children could run to in case you, the parent, are unable to assist them.
- Get out first, then dial 9-1-1. If your clothes catch fire, stop, drop, and roll until extinguished.
- Pick a meeting place for you and your loved ones, and go directly there if a fire does occur.
When it comes to fire, every second counts. How you prepare for that house fire counts even more.