Home fires can wreak havoc. A small fire can grow into huge flames in a matter of seconds and become life threatening. Each year more than 2,500 people die in the US and property loss is estimated at $7.3 billion.
To minimize the risk of home fires and to ensure you escape this situation successfully, a proper fire escape plan is imperative. And to prepare one, it is important to have a sound understanding of the fire prevention techniques and rules.
Let’s take a look at what you should consider when preparing a fire escape plan for your home:
Have Two Escape Routes
Create two ways to get out of each room. This is important because in case the primary way gets blocked due to fire or smoke, you can always escape from the second way. The two viable options for your second way out are either create a window onto a neighboring roof or purchase a collapsible ladder. A collapsible ladder will help you escape from upper story windows easily. Only purchase a collapsible ladder evaluated by a nationally recognized laboratory like UL (Underwriters Laboratory).
Barred Windows and Doors with Quick Release Devices
If you have windows and doors installed in your home with security bars, make sure they have quick release devices to allow them to open immediately in case of a fire emergency. Also, make sure every member of your family knows how to operate and open barred windows and doors.
Have a Fire Extinguisher and Learn How to Use it
Fire extinguishers are great to tackle small fires before they turn your property into ashes, but you need to know how to operate it to ensure you don’t hurt yourself or damage your home.
Install Smoke Alarms
Just like fire extinguishers, smoke alarms are also very useful. These devices installed in your home can alert you and your family to fire any time of the day. It can significantly increase your chances of surviving a deadly fire. However, installation and maintenance of your smoke alarm is imperative to enjoy its benefits.
Here’s what you can do:
Install both photoelectric and ionization smoke alarms
Test batteries on a monthly basis. Mostly smoke alarm batteries last at least a year. But change them if needed.
Hire a professional to install them. Make sure they are installed on every level of your home even the basement. According to the US Fire Administration smoke alarms should be installed both inside and outside the sleeping areas.
Also, after every 8 to 10 years replace the entire smoke alarm system.
Keep these things in mind when creating a fire escape plan for your home. Remember these little things can help you save your live, lives of your loved ones, and your home.
For more information or in case of fire emergency, get in touch with San Antonio Professional Firefighters Association.