Fire Prevention Week Tips
Fire Prevention Week runs October 9-15, and it’s an observance with a worthy cause. The amount of home fires has fallen drastically in the past few decades, but hundreds of thousands still occur each year, causing billions of dollars of damage, and sadly, many deaths. Not all fires are preventable, but many are with just a little preparation. So, take this as an opportunity to follow through with these fire safety tips.
Check Your Smoke Detectors
Even in an apartment, there are still points of fire safety that you ought to check out regularly. The most important one is your smoke detectors. You should test your detectors once a month, replace their batteries twice a year, and replace the units entirely every ten years. Although your apartment managers should be on top of that last task, don’t hesitate to make a call if something doesn’t look right.
Do a Safety Walkthrough of Your Home
While you’re replacing your smoke detectors’ batteries, there are a few other spots around the home to take note of. One often-overlooked fire hazard is your laundry dryer’s lint filter. Lint is highly flammable, so cleaning out the filter is a habit you should practice every single time you do your laundry. Also, be sure that you aren’t overdoing it with your appliances throughout your home. Plugging in multiple energy-intensive appliances can trip your circuit breaker, or worse, start a fire.
Stay Safe in the Kitchen
We all like to think we’re pros in the kitchen, but this part of the home holds the biggest threat for fire hazards. According to the National Fire Protection Association, cooking fires are the leading cause of home fires and injuries. The association recommends that you stay in the kitchen at all times when cooking with high temperatures. Further, avoid cooking when you’re overtired or you’ve been drinking. It’s also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the methods for putting out a grease fire.
Keep a Fire Extinguisher Handy
Your apartment should be equipped with at least one fire extinguisher, and if it isn’t, you need to get in touch with your apartment managers immediately. Because your kitchen is the place in your home where a fire is most likely to start, the space under the sink is where most people keep their fire extinguisher. Using a fire extinguisher is fairly straightforward, but take some time to brush up on the correct way to use it.
Have an Escape Plan and Know It
Unfortunately, despite your best preparations, the worst can still happen. You and your family should have a detailed plan for escaping your home in the event of a fire. Familiarize yourselves with your home’s exits, keep these routes clear at all times, and set a designated area outside your home as your family’s meeting point. Keep in mind that it isn’t enough to simply know your fire plan; you should practice it regularly and as realistically as possible.
Nobody likes to think that a fire can happen in their home, but the sad truth is that it can. That’s why it’s so important that you keep these fire safety tips in mind, and not just during Fire Prevention Week, but throughout the whole year.