In the middle of the hottest month, July, everyone should be aware of the increased risk of property fire. Personal responsibility and preparedness are key elements in preventing a disastrous fire.
The following fire safety tips should be known and reviewed by the entire family or work collective:
- 1. A smoke alarm and carbon monoxide detector should be installed in every bedroom, outside of every sleep area and on every level of the building, including the basement. The batteries should be changed at least once a year.
- 2. All smoke alarms must be interconnected throughout the property. This way, when one sounds, they all do.
- 3. Alarms must be tested at least once a month by pushing the test button.
- 4. Property owners should replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old or sooner if they don’t respond properly.
- 5. Everyone in the building should know the sound of the smoke alarm and understand what to do when they hear it.
- 6. Fire extinguishers should be kept handy and everyone in the family or work collective should learn how to use them.
- 7. Two escape routes from each room should be designated and practiced regularly.
- 8. Everyone has to learn the “Stop, Drop, and Roll” technique in case clothing catches on fire.
- 9. It is not advised to store old mattresses in the home or garage.
- 10. Kids must be taught that matches, lighters and candles are tools, not toys. If an adult suspects that a child is playing with fire, the adult should check under beds and in closets for telltale signs like burned matches. Matches and lighters must be stored in a secure drawer or cabinet.
While it is crucial to be cautious of fire hazards year-round, taking the time to walk through these steps at least once a year can save the life of the occupants, as well as the property. When a fire happens, there is no more time for planning.