What You can do to Prevent a Fire in your Home
One of the foremost methods to prevent a fire from occurring in your home is to install smoke detectors outside each separate sleeping area and on each floor of your home, including the basement.
- Working smoke detectors can reduce the risk of death in a residential fire by 40% to 50%.
- The best smoke detectors are those with lithium powered batteries and hush buttons. A lithium powered battery can last up to 10 years; hush buttons allow you to quickly stop nuisance alarms that are caused by oven smoke, burnt toast, prolonged cooking, etc.
If 10 year, long life smoke detectors are not available, install smoke detectors which use regular batteries, preferably alkaline, and replace batteries as necessary, at least once a year. (A helpful tip to remember: when changing your clocks in the fall to standard time, change your smoke detector batteries as well!)
Some helpful tips to prevent a fire from starting in your home:
- Use caution when cooking. Never leave food on a stove or in an oven unattended. Avoid wearing clothes with long, loose fitting sleeves which could easily catch on fire when reaching for a pot on the cooktop.
- Have your heating system checked annually. Follow manufacturers instructions when using portable heaters. Also, have your chimney checked and cleaned when necessary, especially if you use your fireplace frequently
- Do not smoke in bed. Smoking is the leading cause of fire deaths and the second most cause of residential fires. Never leave burning cigarettes unattended, do not empty smoldering ashes into the trash and keep ashtrays away from upholstered furniture and window treatments
- Keep matches and lighters away from children
- Store flammable substances in a safe place, away from heat sources.
- Never leave burning candles unattended
Information provided by the Center for Disease Control & Prevention.