Practicing fire safety at home will help keep your family, belongings, and home safe from a disaster. Follow the tips below to protect your property.
Practice Fire Safety in the Home
Fires occur suddenly and spread quickly, causing damage to the home and potentially leading to injuries. Here are a few tips to help prevent a house fire and to be better prepared if one breaks out.
Test Smoke Detectors
Your home should have at least one smoke detector on each floor. Install devices in the bedrooms and in the hallways outside sleeping areas. Every month, test the smoke detectors. This is a task even young children can help with. Press the button to verify the alarm will sound. Twice each year, replace the batteries in your smoke detecting devices.
Kitchen and Laundry Room Fire Risks
The kitchen and laundry room are the most common areas for a house fire to occur. Keep fire extinguishers accessible in each area and make sure the smoke detectors are functioning.
To help prevent fire, keep the kitchen clean. Never leave food cooking unattended and regularly clean the stove and oven to remove grease and food particles. Keep dish rags, cleaning cloths, and paper towels away from the oven. Make sure your kitchen fire extinguisher is rated to handle grease fires.
The clothes dryer is also a common culprit in house fires. The combination of high heat and dryer lint can cause the material to combust and start a fire. Make sure your dryer vents to the outdoors. Clean the lint trap after each use and don’t operate the dryer while you’re sleeping or away from home. As with any household appliance, make sure your laundry machines have plenty of space around them to allow for airflow so they won’t overheat.
Make a Fire Safety Plan
Spend some time making an escape plan with members of your family. A well-planned route will help everyone to exit the house safely and calmly in case of a fire. Teach children to call 911 if they see a fire. Talk to them about testing doorknobs to see if they are hot to the touch and how to crawl on hands and knees so they’re beneath the smoke as they exit your home. Choose a nearby spot in the neighborhood for the family to meet up if a fire breaks out.
Fire Safety with Candles and Open Flames
If you like burning candles in your home, never leave them unattended. The candle could be tipped over or hot wax may drip and burn fabrics or the carpet. Before leaving the room or going to bed, extinguish all candles. The same is true for the fireplace or your fire pit in the backyard. Always have an adult present to manage the flames and keep flammable materials far away from fire.