Fire prevention at home

Olivia Emisar By Olivia Emisar, 26th Aug 2010 | Follow this author | RSS Feed | Short URL
Posted in Wikinut>Guides>Emergency Preparedness>Fire

The best way to prevent a fire in the home involves vigilance to keep flammable items properly stored or monitored while in use and having a plan of action that will keep everyone safe in case of a household fire.

Outside the home

- Clear debris and dried up vegetation. Summer fires can spread in a matter of seconds by dried up branches and weeds.

- In areas where fires are common, the fire department requires a clearance of 50 ft between the home and brush, vegetation and trees.

- Keep a water hose attached to an outside spigot and ready to be used in case of a fire.

- Keep gas grills away from the exterior walls since a grease fire could engulf the home in seconds. Likewise, make sure that the area where the grill will be in use is not cramped with materials that could catch fire, such as low hanging decorations, electrical cords and umbrellas.

- Gasoline and propane should be properly stored in a shed away from the home. Lawnmowers should be winterized and the tank emptied before seasonal storage.

- Teach children to stay away from hot objects and not to play with fire.

- The entire family should know how to call the fire department and the escape route with agreed meeting place in case of a fire raging out of control. Practicing the drill will save time and lives.

Inside the home

- Always extinguish fireplace fires and candles before leaving the room or going to bed. One spark can engulf the living room in a matter of seconds. The toxic fumes and smoke are the number one reason for deaths in a fire, those who can’t escape, asphyxiate due to lack of oxygen.

- Dryers should vent to the outside of the home and the lint trap cleaned and disposed of properly after every use. Lint dryer makes great kindling when lighting a fire in the woods, so it is important to keep the lint trap cleaned since excessive heat buildup will cause a fire. Most people don’t think twice about leaving a load in the dryer while they are gone, but this is a very unsafe practice.

- A two story home should have a ladder readily available INSIDE of the home to allow the second floor occupants to escape through a window. Once again, practicing regularly will allow adult and children alike to react instinctively as trained rather than panic and mourn the ensuing tragedy.

- Kitchens should be equipped with a small fire extinguisher specifically designated for grease fires. EVERYONE in the family should know how to use it. This is particularly important for teenagers who have a tendency to be distracted by phone calls, television and background conversations.

- If a fire starts on the frying pan, simply reach with a pot holder to turn off the heat and immediately cover the pan with a lid. The lack of oxygen and power will kill the fire. Under no circumstances move the pan that is on fire. This will prevent sparks from igniting nearby materials or engulfing the person in flames.

- Don’t smoke in bed and always extinguish or wet cigarretes before disposing.
- Check batteries on smoke/carbon monoxide detectors regularly. Purchase a combination smoke detector/carbon monoxide detector if space is at a premium.

Final thoughts

Preventing fires and staying safe requires some common sense and a vigilant attitude. Install smoke alarms and replace the batteries once a year (whether it needs it or not). If the household has small children, purchase fire alarms that allow parents to record their voice urging the children to wake up and leave the home. Studies have shown that children will sleep soundly through a blaring alarm but will respond to a parent’s voice more quickly. A few seconds could make all the difference in the life of a family.

Sources: National Prevention Fire Association
The United States Fire Department


Accidental Death, Carbon Monoxide, Family Safety, Fire, Flammable, Kitchen Tips, Prevention, Safety, Smoke Dectectors

Meet the author

author avatar Olivia Emisar
Writer (obviously), currently working and publishing articles online. My passion is creative writing and novels are always on the works.

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author avatar Pinkchic18
3rd Sep 2010 (#)

Very useful tips. Congrats on the star page!

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author avatar Olivia Emisar
3rd Sep 2010 (#)

Thank you.

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