Operation 7: Home Fire Safety Tips

January 16, 2009 8:50:15 AM PST
Approximately 83% of all fire fatalities in the U.S. are in the home. Residential fires kill an average of 3,900 people and injure an additional 18,000 people annually. Reduce your chances of becoming a statistic by following the tips below: 1. Install and Maintain Smoke Detectors
Smoke detectors warn you of fire in time to let you escape. Install them on each level of your home and outside of each sleeping area.

2. Plan and Practice Your escape
With your family, plan two ways out of every room. Choose a meeting place outside where everyone should gather. Once you are out, stay out!

3. Space Heaters Need space
Keep portable space heaters at least 3 feet (1 meter) from paper, curtains, furniture, clothing, bedding, or anything else that can burn. Never leave heaters on when you leave home or go to bed.

4. Be Careful Cooking
Keep cooking areas clear of combustibles, and don't leave cooking unattended. Keep your pot's handles turned inward so children won't knock or pull them over the edge of the stove.

5. A Match is a Tool for Adults
In the hands of a child, matches or lighters are extremely dangerous. Store them up high where kids can't reach them, preferably in a locked cabinet.

6. Use Electricity Safely
If an appliance smokes or begins to smell unusual, unplug it immediately and have it repaired. Check all your electrical cords, and replace any that are cracked or frayed.

7. Cool a Burn
If someone gets burned, immediately place the wound in cool water for 10 to 15 minutes to ease the pain. If burn blisters or chars, see a doctor immediately.

8. Stop, Drop, and Roll
Everyone should know this rule: if your clothes catch fire, don't run! Stop where you are, drop to the ground, and roll over and over to smother the flames.

9. Crawl Low Under Smoke
If you must exit through smoke, clean air will be several inches off the floor. Get down on your hands and knees, and crawl to the nearest safe exit.

10. Practice Candle Safety
Never leave a lit candle unattended in any room of the house; Never leave candles burning when you go to bed; and never use candles near combustible materials such as curtains, bedding and cabinets.