Around 7 people die in the USA every year due to home fires. Kids under the age of 5 have a much higher risk of dying in a home fire than children of other age groups, too. Taking extra precautions to ensure that your kids know what to do in an emergency such as a fire is crucial. Young kids may not be able to understand so well, so taking extra precautions to prevent a fire and be alerted of one early on is a must.
Coming Up With A Fire Escape Plan
More than 75% of homes in the USA do not have a fire escape plan that they go through with their families regularly. Creating a plan tailored to your family and home and practicing it regularly is very important if you want to be prepared for a fire. Kids as young as 3 can usually follow a fire escape plan. You can make your fire escape plan more effective by doing the following:
- Practicing the plan regularly
- Keep all exits clear
- Draw a picture of your home and plan two escape routes
- Have a safe meeting place outside of the home
Ideally, you will come up with two routes of escape for every room. As well as the door, there should be another route, like a window. When you practice your escape route plans, you should do so in the dark, or with your eyes closed. This allows you to navigate your way out more effectively if your vision is impaired by smoke. Using multiple scenarios could be a good way to ensure you’re prepared for anything.
Things You Should Be Teaching Your Kids
As well as having a drill that you practice with your kids, you should also teach them the following:
- Touch doors to see if they are hot before opening. If they are, don’t open them.
- The stop, drop, and roll technique.
- To crawl through rooms and hallways to avoid inhaling smoke.
- Matches and lighters are not toys, make sure they know not to play if they find them and to tell somebody.
Using Rescue Lights To Alert Fire Crews
In the unfortunate event that you and your kids get trapped, you can use a flashlight to alert rescue crews to your presence through the windows. You will need to teach kids to do the same in case they are ever trapped alone. You can also try to teach your toddlers to lie on the floor next to their beds if they are ever trapped in their rooms.
Firefighters are trained to look next to your child’s bed when entering rooms, so doing this will help them to get your child out faster and safer.
Other Things You Need To Do
Of course, you can do everything listed above but there are other things you’ll need to do too.
Ensure you install fire and smoke alarms, put them in the right place, test them regularly, and replace them after 10 years. If the damage is already done but you managed to get out safely, places like Trilink Restoration can help you to get your home back to normal. However, it’s better to avoid this altogether.
Reducing fire threats in the home is also key; for example, don’t overload plug sockets, reduce clutter, never leave candles unattended, don’t use super old appliances, and have a fire extinguisher to hand.