Friday, December 20, 2013
Home fires can cause a lot of damage and grief in the family. Avoid these scenarios and keep safe by recognizing and eliminating fire hazards and risks. Use fire-retardant materials, install smoke alarms and subscribe to safe habits in the home.
A lot of fires start in the kitchen where the stove and other appliance may pose fire hazards. Don’t leave your stove unattended when you’re cooking. Turn it off whenever you leave the room, even for a short period of time. If you’re boiling, roasting, simmering or baking food, stay inside your house, use a timer and check the food regularly. Take care to keep flammable materials such as potholders, mittens and kitchen towels away from the stove. Keep your pets out of your kitchen or at least, away from the countertops to keep them from knocking things onto the stove.
Smoke alarms can save lives and your home from fire. They could alert you to a small fire and give you the chance to put it out before it evolves into something more serious. Smoke alarms should be installed in the kitchen and on every level of the house. They should also be present in bedrooms and other sleeping areas. Check to see if your smoke alarm is working properly every month and replace its batteries at least every year. If you have kids at home, it’s important to help them become aware of the sound of your smoke alarm and what they should do when it sounds.
Knowing what to do in case of a fire in your home is just as important. Make sure your family knows more than one way of escaping from each room of your house. In a home filled with smoke from a fire, people should crouch low and crawl their way out of the house. Your family members should also know how to stop, drop and roll on the ground, in case their clothes catch on fire. If you’re living in a condominium unit, you should also familiarize yourself with the location of emergency exits and fire extinguishers.
Children playing with fire are another cause of home fires. Teach them about the dangers of playing with lighters, matches and candles. Also, if you’re a smoker, avoid smoking in bed. - Aislinn Kee