Saturday, Feb 25, 2017 | Tracy Hendrix

Tips for Home Fire Drills

Many homeowners don’t have a specific plan for what they’d do in the event of a fire. A failure to prepare for emergencies can cause disasters if tragedy strikes, so it’s important to know what to do in advance. This is especially true for families with small children, who might not have any idea what to do without a plan in place. Fire safety is extremely important, and it should be practiced until it becomes second nature. You can use these tips to have a fire drill with your family:

Plan Multiple Escape Routes

If the door to your bedroom is blocked by a fire, climb out of a window. If the front of the house is inaccessible, make your way to the back. Having multiple escape routes help to ensure that no matter what the situation may be, your family will always have a way out.

Draw Things Out

Many children benefit from having visual cues. Draw a rough sketch of your home’s layout, and mark anywhere there’s a door or window. Show your child the ways out, and ask them to show you which way would be best if there was a fire in a particular room.

Close Doors as You Go

Closing doors helps to starve a fire of the oxygen it needs to burn, and it can help hold it off while you make your way outside. If there’s a fire on the other side of a door, don’t open it– instead use your second way out.

Stay Low

The air quality will be better on the ground level. Stay out of the smoke by crouching down. Keep moving until you’re in a safe location, but never move towards a fire. You’ll be able to tell you’re getting closer to it if things are getting hotter.

Don’t Stop to Take Belongings

The majority of the items in your house can be replaced– you cannot. Keep precious and important items like photo albums, jewelry, and identification documents in a fireproof safe.

Have a Meeting Place

Your family should all assemble at a spot that’s agreed upon in advance. If the fire occurs at night, you may struggle to find each other without this meeting place, especially if everyone doesn’t have a cell phone.

Practice Your Drill at Different Times of Day

It’s easy to have a drill in broad daylight, but things can get more confusing and scary if the fire happens at night. Agree with your family to practice the drill at different times of the day so that you’ll be prepared no matter what.

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