This year we’ll celebrate the 100th annual Fire Prevention Week from October 9th to 15th. This occasion provides you and your family the perfect opportunity to address fire safety in your home ahead of the holiday season.    

Fires are incredibly dangerous and can ignite and spread quickly. From the time a fire alarm sounds, you may have as little as 2 minutes to escape safely. Because time is so limited, your family should have fire prevention strategies in place and an evacuation plan that everyone knows and can execute when smoke detectors go off.  

Here are some ways to prepare your family for fire safety and emergency responses:

  1. Install smoke detectors in every bedroom, hallways outside bedrooms, stairwells, and living areas on every level of the home, including basements. Test monthly to ensure they are all working properly and change batteries as recommended by the manufacturer.  
  2. Learn how to use a fire extinguisher. For small fires that may start in the home, using a fire extinguisher may be all the fire-fighting that is needed. Educate yourself, your spouse, and any older children on using one safely. 
  3. Plan your escapes. Find the safest and quickest route to get out of every room. Set up a family meeting spot that everyone will go to in case of an emergency so you know everyone’s out and safe from fire. Practice evacuating and meeting. 
  4. Make sure everyone knows to call 911. Explain to your children why a smoke detector could go off and teach them about different reasons that warrant a call.   
  5. Practice stop, drop, and roll.  
  6. Monitor children and pets around any open flames, like a candle or a gas stove.  
  7. Keep space heaters, curling irons, wax warmers, etc. away from other objects. Make sure they have cooled off before storing them. 
  8. Store lighters and matches out of reach of children.  
  9. Practice fire safety in the kitchen: Keep stoves clean. When using the stove, keep the handles on your pans pushed back.  
  10. Never overload electrical outlets or power strips.