Establishing a Fire Escape Plan

Posted by on Oct 6, 2016 in Blog | Comments Off on Establishing a Fire Escape Plan

Establishing a Fire Escape Plan

Time is your biggest enemy when escaping from a burning building. In less than 30 seconds, a small flame can get completely out of control and turn into a major fire. It only takes minutes for a house to fill with smoke and become engulfed in flames. Proper planning may make the difference between life and death.


That is why it is recommended that you and your family create a fire escape plan as soon as possible. After creating the plan together, it is recommended that you practice the escape at least twice a year both in the light and in the dark so that everyone knows how to feel their way out of the house. This will also ensure that the escape plans identified can be used by everyone safely.


You and your family should establish an escape plan that outlines at least two exits from each room in your home in the event of a fire. If the primary exit is blocked by fire or smoke, you will need a second way out.


When creating an escape plan, incorporate the following elements:


  • Start by drawing a floor plan of your home, marking two exits out of each room, including doors and windows. Also, mark the location of each smoke alarm.


  • Walk through the fire plan as a family, discussing any obstacles that might get in the way of escaping properly and addressing those concerns together.


  • Demonstrate how to use any fire safety equipment that is located in the house. This includes fire extinguishers or portable fire escape ladders.


  • Establish a meeting place outside of the home where everyone knows to go once they are safely out. Designate one person to go to a neighbor’s house to call the fire department.


  • Check to see if your street number is clearly visible from the road. If not, paint it on the curb or install lighted house numbers to ensure that firefighters and other emergency responders can easily find your home.


  • If any windows on your home have security bars, make sure that they have emergency release devices and that everyone in your family knows how to use them.


  • If you live in a highrise building, make sure you and your family know the building emergency exits and that you’ve reviewed fire safety information specific to tall buildings.


Other important things to review with family members:


  • When coming to a closed door, use the back of your hand to feel the top of the door, the doorknob and the crack between the door and the frame to make sure that the fire is not directly outside. If the door feels hot, use the secondary exit. If the door feels cool, brace yourself against it and open it slowly.


  • Do not waste any time trying to save your personal property. Instead, take the safest exit route.


  • If you must escape through smoke, crawl low under the smoke and cover your mouth.


  • Never go back into a burning home for any reason.


  • Remember: if your clothes catch on fire; stop, drop and roll!


If you have additional concerns about your home’s safety in the event of a fire, feel free to reach out to us directly. We’re always happy to help.

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