In light of the emergency fire situation throughout much of Southern California, we think this is an important time to highlight fire safety tips for protecting your home and children. We recommend bookmarking this post for future reference or printing it out as a checklist.
1. Have a plan.
Have a plan for escape that your whole family has memorized. Have a safe meeting place planned should you become separated. Try to find two escapes from each room in the house, and memorize them. Run practice drills!
2. Install the right smoke detectors, and plenty of them.
Each level of your home should have a detector, and it’s a smart idea to place one in or near every bedroom. Buy the kind that clearly state both “ionization and photoelectric” capabilities on the packaging.
3. Proper storage and disposal.
Keep flammable cleaners, products and household items away from kitchen ranges and heaters. Properly dispose of waste. Make sure your home is not vulnerable to fire!
4. Keep the yard clean and free of debris.
Keep bushes and hedges trimmed, remove debris, and take extra caution with shrubbery and plants next to the walls of your home.
5. Install a sprinkler system indoors if you are able to afford the cost.
This is another extra safeguard in the event of sudden fire. It will also reduce your home insurance rate.
6. Never go back into a burning home.
Your precious items are not nearly as precious as your life. Don’t go back inside.
7. Keep several fire extinguishers in readily accessible places.
Learn how to use them – and teach your children to use them.
8. Have emergency kits ready to go.
You should have an emergency case with a change of clothing for each family member, non-perishable foods, drinking water, a battery-operated radio, matches and a lighter, a first aid kit, and flashlight. Here is a complete emergency kit list.
9. Smart structures.
Fire-retardant materials for windows, screens, sidings and roofs are smart choices if you are in the market for a new home or are considering remodeling. Make your yard as free and clear as possible to create a safety barrier from fire. If your property is fenced, consider a non-combustible material for fencing. Here are more tips to make your home safe.
10. Keep those gutters clear!
Make sure your roof, gutters and eaves are clear of every leaf and needle. It only takes a single spark to create a serious fire.