Fall is full of so many fun events and holidays, like Halloween and Thanksgiving. Yet, during fall there is an important, yet much less celebrated observance: the month of October is known as Fire Protection Month.
According to the Home Safety Council, more than 3,000 people die from fires each year. Eighty percent of those occur while in the home; the majority of those happen when people are sleeping. And according to the National Fire Protection agency, 62 percent of home-related fire deaths resulted because the home didn’t have smoke alarms, or the alarms were not functional. So, if your smoke alarms are more than 10 years old, you should consider replacing them. Below are some helpful tips that you should consider.
- Never plug multiple items into the same electrical outlet or circuit. If an electrical appliance smokes or smells unusual, unplug it immediately and have it serviced.
- Make sure light bulbs are the recommended wattage for all of your light fixtures.
- Keep baking soda or salt near your stove to extinguish grease fires. Don’t use water because it will spread the flame.
- Keep your stove’s exhaust fan and range hood free of grease. Keep the cooking area free of combustibles.
- Never leave cooking unattended. Turn pan handles inward so they don’t hang over the edge of the stove.
- Keep matches and lighters out of children’s reach. Teach children these are dangerous items to be used by adults only.
- Never use an extension cord on a permanent basis and avoid running them under rugs.
- Never install a double-cylinder deadbolt lock on your exit doors. They require a key to unlock from the inside. When you need to exit in a hurry this type of lock can be deadly.
- Don’t place hay, straw or other combustible materials beneath your home.
- Don’t smoke in bed or when you are drowsy. Fires created by cigarettes cause more deaths than any other kind of fire. Run butts and ashes under water before disposing.
- Never leave home with the clothes dryer running. Clean dryer vents frequently. Clean lint screens after each load to keep the airway clear.
- Never block doors or windows with furniture or other objects.
- Store flammable liquids like gasoline, kerosene, paint thinner, etc. in approved containers outside your home, but not under your home.
- Make regular safety checks of your home’s major systems or hire a professional to inspect them. Check for cleanliness, proper functioning and loose connections for your heating and cooling system, fuel lines, water heater, electrical, appliances and plumbing.
Not only do we value you as a client, we value you as friends. The last thing we’d ever want to hear is your home is damaged by a fire… or worse. Go through this checklist and double check that your family is completely safe and secure.