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FIRE SAFETY

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FIRE SAFETY FOR THE FAMILY

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Preventing


- Respect fire and teach your children to respect it too.

- Children's sleepwear, sizes 0-6x, are required to be flame retardant. An increase of injuries has been reported among children sleeping in garments classified as "daywear". Some garments look just like sleepwear, but are not flame retardant. The only way to tell the difference is by carefully examination of the label.

- Replace frayed or worn plugs

- Throughout the home, make sure all tools and appliances have a testing agency label (UL or FM).

- Never plug more appliances into a socket than it is designed to safely accommodate.

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- Cooking Equipment

  • Do not leave the stove unattended when cooking especially when the burner is turned to a high setting.
  • Do not store items such as cookies, candy, or other items children may want to get to, above the stove or in the immediate area. This will reduce the attraction kids may have for climbing on cooking equipment, thus reducing the possibility of their clothing catching fire.
  • You can purchase covers to put on the stove knobs to prevent children from turning the burners or stove on.

- Cigarette Lighters & Matches

  • Each year more than 200 deaths are associated with fires started by cigarette lighters. About two thirds of these result from children playing with lighters. Most victims are under five years old.
  • Keep lighters and matches out of sight and out of the reach of children.
  • Children as young as two years old are capable of lighting cigarette lighters and matches.

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Preparing


- Make sure your street number can be seen from the curb, so that emergency personnel can find your address in an emergency.

- Smoke detectors - smoke detectors need to be inspected monthly and replaced every 10 years. 

- Have a Fire Extinguisher on hand

- If there are family members who cannot escape unassisted, consider a residential sprinkler system.

- Teach your children STOP, DROP and ROLL in the event their clothes catch fire.

- Utilize programs designed for children, such as Sparky, to make learning about fire safety fun, but educational.

- Practice fire safety techniques such as "get low and go under smoke".

- Children are often found hiding in closets or under beds where they feel safe. Hold fire drills in the home at least twice a year to let them practice the right thing to do.


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- Create Your Own Fire Escape Floor Diagram

- Know at least two ways out of each room and practice escaping by both the primary and secondary routes to be sure that windows are not stuck and screens can be taken out quickly.

- Windows and doors with security bars need quick release devices to allow them to be opened quickly in an emergency.

- Practice escaping in the dark.

- Have an arranged meeting place. If you all meet at a specific place, you will know if everyone has gotten out safely and no one will be hurt looking for someone who is already safe.

- Designate one person to go to a neighbor's home to phone the fire department.

- Make sure you have homeowners insurance policies in place to cover the cost of damages, in the event of a fire.  If you live in an apartment, ask your insurance agent about renters insurance.

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In the Event Of

In The Event Of


Getting Out

  • Do not waste any time saving property.
  • Take the safest exit route
  • Use the back of your hand to feel the door knob to see if it is safe to exit the room you are in. If it is hot, the fire is close.
  • If you must escape through smoke, stay as close to the floor as possible and under the smoke

If you can't get out, go to a window and shout for help

  • Signal your location by hanging a light-colored piece of cloth from inside a window
  • Try calling 911 to let them know your location in the building

Once You're Out

  • Stay Out!
  • Go to your meeting place.
  • Call the fire department (911) from a neighbor's house
  • If someone is missing tell the firefighters, they are equipped to perform rescues safely.

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Recovering From A Fire

  • Contact Your Insurance Company - If you have insurance, your insurance company can help you secure temporary housing and get you set up with the finances needed to purchase clothing and other items needed to get you back on your feet.
  • Local American Red Cross - In the event that your family should become the victim of a fire and the American Red Cross is needed, this is their local information that would apply to 43068:

Ohio Buckeye Region

995 E Broad Street

Columbus, OH, 43205

Phone: (614) 253-2740

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UNDERSTANDING SMOKE DETECTORS

It is estimated that a third of the smoke alarms in place are not working often due to failure to replace a worn-out battery. Many homes do not have as many smoke alarms as are needed to protect the occupants properly.



Types of Smoke Alarms:

  • Battery Powered - most of the time use one 9V battery to operate
  • Hard Wired - are wired into the electrical system and usually have a back up battery in the event of a power failure. These can usually be connected together so when one alarm activates, all interconnected alarms go off.
  • People with hearing imparments can get smoke alarms with bright, flashing lights or vibrating signals. To waken you, the light needs to be over the head of the bed and should be rated at least 110 candles. Such bright lights must be powered from house power, so if it is battery operated, it is probably not bright enough to use in the bedroom.

Smoke Alarm Rules:

  • Do not disable your smoke alarm if it alarms due to cooking or other non-fire causes. You may not remember to put the batteries back in. Some of the newer models have a "hush" button that silences nuisance alarms.

Installing Smoke Alarms

  • Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement .
  • Install smoke alarms both inside and outside sleeping areas, especially if you sleep with your door shut.
  • Install them either on the ceiling of the wall, no lower than 6"-12" from the ceiling.
  • Follow the manufacturer's installation instructions.

Where Can I Get Them?

  • Any hardware store and many grocery stores carry smoke alarms now.
  • Some fire departments offer smoke alarms for little or no cost.

Maintenance:

Some fire safety organizations promote "change your clocks, change your batteries" when the change is made back from daylight savings time each fall. Use this as a reminder that it's time to check your smoke detectors!


- Older adults and physically impaired may have problems reaching their alarms to test them.

  • There is one brand of smoke alarm on which the test feature can be activated by shining a flashlight on it.
  • Another brand has an automatic test that activates at the same time and day, once a week.

- Battery Powered

  • Batteries need to be replaced at least once per year or when a "chirping" sound is heard
  • The whole unit should be replaced every 8-10 years

- Hard Wired

  • Batteries need to be checked monthly
  • Batteries need to be replaced at least once per year or when a "chirping" sound is heard
  • The whole unit should be replaced every 8-10 years

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HOLIDAY FIRES 


The holiday with the most fires is 4th of July

  • There is an increase in grass and brush fires ignited by fireworks.
  • CPSC estimates that in 2007 about 9,800 people were treated in hospital emergency rooms for injuries associated with fireworks.
  • More than half the injuries were burns and most of the injuries involved the hands, eyes, and legs.
  • Ohio ONLY ALLOWS sparklers and/or other novelties
  • Parents should supervise the ordering and use of mail-order "make your own" firework kits and components.
  • Light fireworks outdoors in a clear area away from houses, dry leaves or grass and flammable materials.
  • Keep a bucket of water nearby for emergencies and for pouring on fireworks that don't go off.
  • Do not try to relight or handle malfunctioning fireworks. Douse and soak them with water and throw them away.
  • Be sure other people are out of range before lighting fireworks.
  • Never ignite fireworks in a container, especially a glass or metal container.
  • Children 10 to 14 years old had the highest per capita injury rate among all age groups.
  • Do not allow young children to play with fireworks under any circumstances.
  • Sparklers, considered by many the ideal "safe" firework for the young, burn at very high temperatures and can easily ignite clothing.
Halloween & "Devil's Night"
  • Though Devil's Night arson fires occur more frequently than other nights, the trend has decreased from previous years. Public awareness of Devil's Night has played a role in this reduction of arson.
  • On average the total fire loss for the 2 nights is estimated to total $56 million, estimated to injure 136 people and kill about 27.

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Thanksgiving
  • As may be expected, the extensive cooking on Thanksgiving results in numerous cooking related fires.
  • On average 5,200 Thanksgiving Day fires require a fire department response, cause $21 million in property losses, and result in about 51 injuries and 11 fatalities.

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Winter Holiday Season
  • The winter holiday season exists during a time of elevated risk for winter heating fires and contains several holidays - Hanukkah, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year's
  • Many people begin the celebration of the season by decorating their home with seasonal garlands, electric lights, candles, or banners
  • The best fire hazard of all, is the Christmas Tree. It may ignite easily, especially if dried out, it burns vigorously, and is often positioned in such a way to allow rapid fire spread to other combustible materials in the house. The lights on the tree and proximity to fireplaces add to the danger, along with discarded gift wrapping. Video of Christmas Tree Fire (will be reloaded soon)
  • The use of candles for decorative or religious purposes also increases during this period.

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Printable Resources & Checklists

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