Home fires have been in a steady decline for the last 30 years, but they still account for over 2,000 deaths and 10,000 injuries every year. Unfortunately, some disasters you can’t predict, but there are a few steps you can take to ensure your safety in the event of a fire in your home. The most important step you can take is having a fire safety plan. Here are some key tips to keep in mind.
Before a fire:
- Ensure your home has a smoke alarm in every room, and test them every month to make sure they are working. If they don’t work, change the batteries, or upgrade.
- Draw out a floor plan and map out at least two possible escape routes from each room. Take into consideration the needs of small children, pets, or people in your home with mobility issues while making an escape plan. Go through your plan with everyone in your home twice a year to make sure it’ll work (windows open, etc.).
- If you live in a condo or apartment, ask your landlord what the best course of action is in the event of a fire.
During a fire:
- Touch the body of a door (do not touch the doorknob!) before opening to check for heat. If the door is hot to the touch, do not open it and find another way out.
- As you move through doors, close them behind you to hinder the spread of the fire.
- In the presence of smoke, stay low to the ground because smoke rises.
- A wet towel or blanket put over your head and face can help prevent injury from flames or smoke inhalation.
After a fire:
- Once you have made it safely away from the fire, call for emergency help.
- Do a headcount of everyone that made it out. If someone is missing do not go back for them, tell the fire department so they can rescue them. They are prepared to battle a blaze- you aren’t.
- After a fire, if the structure of the building is still in tact, call SERVPRO Ft. Lauderdale North or SERVPRO of Plantation 24/7 for emergency service 365 days a year.
For more information on building a fire safety plan, visit the National Fire Protection Association. We here at SERVPRO Ft. Lauderdale North and SERVPRO of Plantation hope you’ll never be in a fire situation, but if you are, you won’t regret having a solid plan in place. Our teams are always ready to help and make it “Like it never even happened.”