This is Fire Prevention Week! This year’s theme is: “Hear the Beep Where You Sleep: Every Bedroom Needs a Smoke Alarm.” This is a perfect time to check the smoke detectors in your home and practice your escape plan. Did you know that three out of five home fire deaths happen in homes with no smoke alarms or smoke alarms that were not in working order?
While only one in five of all reported home fires occurred between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., half of reported home fire deaths result from those fires, when most people are asleep. This is why every bedroom needs a working smoke alarm. One quarter of home fire deaths were caused by fires that started in the bedroom.
A few simple precautions are all that it takes to prevent a fire in the bedroom:
- If you must use a space heater, ensure that blankets, cords, and other objects are kept far away from the heater.
- Only plug as many cords as a single outlet has receptacles. Replace frayed or damaged electrical cords, and never run cords under a rug.
- Purchase a mattress that meets all current fire safety standards and do not smoke in bed.
- Keep candles away from anything that can catch fire.
Smoke alarms are essential to home fire safety. Remember to:
- Put smoke alarms on every floor of your home, including every bedroom and the hallway outside of each sleeping area.
- Test smoke alarms monthly and replace the battery at least once per year.
- Develop your home fire escape plan so that everyone knows two ways out and knows a safe place to meet. Practice your plan twice per year.