Do You Have a Plan When the Heat Is On?
It provides us with warmth, it often helps us relax, and its been referred to as natures television. Many of us enjoy the brighter side of the flame rather than worry about its negative aspects. However, do you or your loved ones know exactly what to do in the event of a fire breaking out in your home? Nobody ever wants to think about the damage that can be caused but it is best to have some kind of procedure in mind, just in case. It can happen when you least expect it, so having a contingency plan of sorts is one of the best things you can do.
Certain safety precautions should always be kept in mind. For example, does your home have a fire extinguisher? It’s not a bad idea to have one in your kitchen in case your next meal goes up in flames. Do you have smoke detectors? Be sure the batteries are fresh. You should keep these things in mind as a general rule of thumb so you know how to react. Plan with your children and loved ones to be on the safe side of things.
Plan Your Escape
In the event of a fire, you will want to get outside as quickly and as safely as possible. Does your home have multiple exits? If so, it’s a good idea to plan out the ideal situation for each one. If a door has locks that require a key to unlock from the inside, keep a spare key somewhere near the door just in case. You don’t want to be fumbling around in your pockets for a key when things heat up.
If a fire breaks out and you are in a room with the door closed, keep these things in mind:
- Check to see if smoke or heat is coming from the cracks around the door.
- If smoke is coming from under the door, do NOT open it.
- If you don’t see smoke you should lightly touch the door and feel for heat. If it is hot or very warm, do NOT open it.
- You may see smoke but the door might not be hot, test the doorknob very lightly to see if it is hot. If it is hot or very warm, do NOT open it.
Typically, heat on the opposite side of the door will mean that there is a fire behind it. You will want to avoid opening the door to a barrage of smoke and heat that will quickly rush into the room. By opening the door slowly and carefully, if you have to, you will avoid being caught off guard and getting punched in the face by said smoke and heat.
Stay low if you can see smoke. By staying closer to the floor, you’ll breath in less smoke that naturally rises. A lot of fire-related harm comes from smoke inhalation rather than the actual fire itself. Often times, you will be able to duck under the smoke by crawling on your hands and knees if need be.
Plan With Your Children and Loved Ones
Everyones safety should be your main priority. Your children should know how to unlock windows in the event of a fire. Obviously getting to your nearest door is the best case scenario, however, sometimes things don’t always work out that way. Windows should also be a viable option. Even if on the second floor of a home, firefighters will be able to immediately notice someone standing by a window. That being said, try to keep the firefighters in mind. They will want to ensure the safety of everyone. It might be scary but it is not in your best interest to hide. Being in a visible location, like by a window, will keep them from having to waste time by searching for you in such a dire situation.
Plan out a meeting place that everyone will know. This is so that once everyone has exited, nobody will have to worry about where anyone is. Make sure it’s a safe distance away, such as in front of a neighbor’s house or directly across the street.
Don’t Stick Around
Everyone has valuables that they grow attached to. It’s natural that you would want to save what is very near and dear to you. However, you can end up putting yourself at serious risk if you try to stick around your home for too long if a fire has broken out. Once you have safely exited, do not go back in for anything. Allow firefighters to do their job and you will more likely have more belongings saved.