Every year during October, families everywhere take the time to review fire safety together during National Fire Safety Month to ensure their family is prepared in case of a fire, and to help prevent fires altogether. It’s important to review the basics, such as having an escape route, a meet up spot, and making sure everyone knows about, “Stop, drop, and roll.” This year though, you can take it one step further by reviewing these tips with your family.
Cooking is the third leading cause of fire deaths and the leading cause of injury among people ages 65 and older. The good news is, there are many precautions you can take to prevent cooking fires. First and foremost, never leave your stove unattended. Don’t try to tackle other tasks while cooking, make sure to give it your full attention. It is also important to only wear short or tight fitting sleeves when you cook as well as keep towels, pot holders, and curtains away from flames. Make sure handles of pots are turned inwards to avoid being knocked over. Finally, never use the oven to heat your home!
Cords, outlets, and wiring pose a huge fire threat, so it is crucial they are inspected and used properly. Look for frayed, exposed wires, or loose plugs on chords. Be sure not to run wiring under rugs, over nails, or across high traffic areas. It is also important not to overload extension cords or outlets, and make sure outlets have cover plates.
If you must smoke, never smoke in bed or when drowsy or medicated. When you are done smoking be sure you put it out all the way. Always keep a safe distance away from people when smoking to avoid catching clothes or a head full of hairspray on fire. Also, keep your smoking supplies of of reach of children at all times.
Space Heater Safety
To use your heater safely, leave 3 feet of clear space around it. This means keeping all furniture, rugs, curtains, and even pets away from it. Make sure your space heaters have a UL mark. That means it is professionally tested by Underwriters Laboratories and is safe.
Before the cold seasons commence make sure your home is ready. If your family loves the contentment and warmth of a fireplace and you use it often, give it a check! Once a year have your chimney and fireplaces inspected and cleaned. It is important that you keep a watchful eye on the fire at all times and put it out before you go to bed. Never leave it running overnight. After you put out the fire, place the hot ash in a metal container.
Smoke detectors of course detect a fire, so they won’t necessarily prevent one. However, they will alert you to a fire as soon as possible so it can be handled right away. There are two different types of smoke detectors: ionization and photoelectric. They each serve in their own special way, making them both are important. For best protection use both type of technologies. Combination alarms are available that include both technologies. Test smoke detectors once and month and replace batteries twice a year.
More Fire Prevention Tips
Looking for more ways you and your family can stay safe? Check out these tips that we reviewed during Fire Prevention Week by clicking the banner below.