Fire safety is the set of practices intended to reduce the destruction caused by fire. Fire safety measures include those that are intended to prevent ignition of an uncontrolled fire, and those that are used to limit the development and effects of a fire after it starts.
This week we will discuss Fire Safety and how to prevent fires.
Monday – Cooking Fire Safety
Cooking fires are the number one cause of home fires and home injuries. Follow a few safety tips to prevent these fires:
- If you are sleepy or have consumed alcohol don’t use the stove or stovetop.
- Stay in the kitchen while you are frying, boiling, or broiling food. If you leave the kitchen for even a short period of time, turn off the stove. The leading cause of fires in the kitchen is unattended cooking.
- If you are simmering, baking, or roasting food, check it regularly, remain in the home while food is cooking, and use a timer to remind you that you are cooking.
- Keep anything that can catch fire — oven mitts, wooden utensils, food packaging, towels or curtains — away from your stovetop.
Here are a few grill fire safety tips.
- Only use grills outdoors, away from siding and deck railings.
- Clean grills often and remove grease or fat build-up.
- Make sure your gas grill lid is open before lighting.
- Have a 3-foot safe-zone around grills and campfires. Keep kids and pets away from the area.
- Dispose of coals after they have cooled in a metal can.
- Never leave grills, fire pits and patio torches unattended.
Tuesday – Home Fire Sprinklers
Home fire sprinklers can save lives and property from fire. They respond quickly and effectively to fire, often extinguishing the fire before the fire department arrives. Only the sprinkler closest to the fire will activate, spraying water on the fire. If a home fire occurs, the risk of dying decreases by about 80% when the home is equipped with a fire sprinkler system.
- Home fire sprinklers save lives and property. In many situations, a family who has survived a fire will also have their “home” to live in and enough of the items and space in their home to continue living their lives as they did before.
- The cost of a home fire sprinkler system in a new home averages $1.35 per sprinklered square foot totaling an amount similar to what is spent on carpet upgrades, paving stone driveway or a whirlpool bath. (Source: Fire Protection Research Foundation Study 2013.)
- A home fire sprinkler system can reduce the homeowner’s insurance premium.
- Fire sprinklers are environmentally friendly. They can reduce the amount of water run-off and pollution from fire damage by up to 71%, and water usage to fight a home fire by as much as 91%. (Source: FM Global and Home Fire Sprinkler Coalition Study 2010.)
- Cigar smoke or burnt toast will not activate a fire sprinkler. Only the high temperature of a fire will activate the sprinkler.
- Home fire sprinklers are effective in cold and warm climates.
Wednesday – Smoke Alarms
Smoke Alarms are a key part of a home fire escape plan. When there is a fire, smoke spreads fast. Working smoke alarms give you early warning so you can get outside quickly. Roughly 3 out of 5 fire deaths happen in a home with no smoke alarms or no working smoking alarms.
- Install smoke alarms in every bedroom. They should also be outside each sleeping area and on every level of the home. Install smoke alarms in the basement too.
- It is best to use interconnected smoke alarms. When one smoke alarm sounds, they all sound.
- Test all smoke alarms at least once a month. Press the test button to be sure the alarm is working.
- A smoke alarm should be on the ceiling or high on a wall. Keep smoke alarms away from the kitchen to reduce false alarms. They should be at least 10 feet (3 meters) from the stove.
- People who are hard-of-hearing or deaf can use special alarms. These alarms have strobe lights and bed shakers.
- Replace all smoke alarms when they are 10 years old.
Thursday – Heating Safety
Heating equipment is one of the leading causes of home fire deaths. With a few simple safety tips and precautions, you can prevent most heating fires from happening.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet away from heating equipment, like the furnace, fireplace, wood stove, or portable space heater.
- Never use your oven to heat your home.
- Have heating equipment and chimneys cleaned and inspected every year by a qualified professional.
- Remember to turn portable heaters off when leaving the room or going to bed.
- Always use the right kind of fuel, specified by the manufacturer, for fuel-burning space heaters.
- Make sure the fireplace has a sturdy screen to stop sparks from flying into the room. Ashes should be cool before putting them in a metal container. Keep the container a safe distance away from your home.…
Friday – Discussion
Has anyone here found themselves in trying to put out a fire that started accidently? What did you do? What would you do differently now that you have this information?
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