Make sure that your home has adequate smoke and carbon monoxide detectors installed. Then, make sure that they are periodically tested or to insure proper working order, and replace the batteries on a regular basis (depending on average battery life) or at a minimum when they “chirp” to indicate low battery status. This needs to be done by an adult.
Make sure that your home has fire extinguishers readily available, and that they are periodically checked to insure full charge and working order. This needs to be done by an adult.
Plan in Advance.
Plan your escape route in advance. Go over this in advance with all family members. There should be at least two exit routes from each room. For apartments, stress the use of stairs, not elevators. Decide in advance where you will meet outside.
STOP, DROP, and ROLL.
If your clothes catch fire, then stop immediately, drop to the ground, and roll over and over to put out the flames.
Smoke Filled Rooms.
Avoid a smoke filled room. Try to avoid any smoke filled area while escaping. But, if you must go through a smoke filled area, then drop to your hands and knees and crawl, keeping your head low. Smoke rises, so the air near ground level will be cleaner.
Matches and Lighters.
Don’t play with matches. Matches and lighters should only be used by adults. If you have small children, you should buy child-resistant lighters, and keep them (and your matches) out of reach of small children.
Use Fireplaces safely. Keep your fires small and under control. Don’t burn items such as old Christmas trees that will quickly ignite. Use a fire screen to prevent sparks and embers from flying out. Don’t burn trash or paper (they can go up your chimney and land on your roof). When removing ashes, remember that ashes can remain hot and cause a fire to start, so don’t carry them in a paper bag or other burnable container, and don’t store them indoors, or near the house or garage.
Use candles safely. Keep them in a non-tippable candle holder, and keep them away from anything that can burn (this includes the area above them). Don’t leave them burning when you go to sleep or leave the area. If possible, put candles inside a hurricane globe.
Cooking and Heating.
Stay clear of open flames and heated surfaces. Stoves, ovens, water heaters, space heaters, etc. all present dangers to you and your loved ones if you don’t respect them. Keep portable heaters at least three feet away from anything that can burn. Turn stoves, ovens, and portable heaters off when you leave home or go to sleep.
If you encounter a grease fire while cooking, place a lid over the pan to smother the fire and turn off the gas or cooking element.
Use flame-retardant or non-combustible materials.
Only use fire works approved for home use and for your area. Even sparklers can be dangerous, as they reach very high temperatures. Only an adult should light them.
Gasoline and Paint Thinner.
Store fuel safely, away from flame sources. Keep the caps and vents on containers tightly closed.
Flammable vapors can explode if exposed to a faulty electrical outlet, a spark from a motor, an open flame (burning candle, gas range, fire place, or a pilot light). Don’t think you have any flammable vapors? What about hair spray, glues, polish (shoe, floor, furniture), nail polish remover, lighting and cleaning liquids, oil-based paints, fertilizers, gasoline, propane gas, kerosene, turpentine, pesticides, disinfectants and …
Make sure that your water heater is set no higher than 120 degrees. Check the temperature of your bath tub before putting a child in it. Don’t leave scalding hot water containers where a child could accidently touch it, tip it, or spill it.
Don’t smoke in bed, and don’t smoke when you’re feeling drowsy – you could fall asleep in the chair, bed, or sofa.
Don’t overload electric outlets, and replace any electric cord which has become frayed or worn.
Extension cords should only be used for short periods of time, not as permanent solutions. Be sure to use heavy duty extension cords for electrical items that require them.