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Tips Before and After a Fire
Excellent Tips Before and After a Fire
Before a Fire
Create and Practice a Fire Escape Plan
In the event of a fire, remember that every second counts. Escape plans help you get out of your home quickly. Twice each year, practice your home fire escape plan. Some helpful tips to consider when preparing this plan include:
- Find two ways to get out of each room in the event the primary way is blocked by fire or smoke.
- A secondary route might be a window onto a neighboring roof or a collapsible ladder for escape from upper story windows.
- Make sure that windows are not stuck, screens can be taken out quickly and that security bars can be properly opened.
- Practice feeling your way out of the house in the dark or with your eyes closed.
- Teach children not to hide from firefighters.
A working smoke alarm significantly increases your chances of surviving a deadly home fire.
- Install both ionization AND photoelectric smoke alarms, OR dual sensor smoke alarms, which contain both ionization and photoelectric smoke sensors.
- Test batteries monthly.
- Replace batteries in battery-powered and hard-wired smoke alarms at least once a year.
- Install smoke alarms on every level of your home, including the basement, both inside and outside of sleeping areas.
- Replace the entire smoke alarm unit every 8-10 years or according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
- Never disable a smoke alarm while cooking – it can be a deadly mistake.
More Fire Safety Tips
- Make digital copies of valuable documents and records like birth certificates.
- Sleep with your door closed.
- Contact your local fire department for information on training on the proper use and maintenance of fire extinguishers.
- Consider installing an automatic fire sprinkler system in your residence.
After a Fire
The following checklist serves as a quick reference and guides for you to follow after a fire strikes.
- Contact your local disaster relief service, such as The Red Cross, if you need temporary housing, food, and medicines.
- If you are insured, contact your insurance company for detailed instructions on protecting your property, conducting inventory, and contacting SERVPRO of Kendall County.
- Check with the fire department to make sure your residence is safe to enter. Watch out for any structural damage caused by the fire.
- The fire department should make sure that utilities are either safe to use or are disconnected before they leave the site. DO NOT attempt to reconnect utilities yourself.
- Conduct an inventory of damaged property and items. Do not throw away any damaged goods until after an inventory is made.
- Begin saving receipts for any money you spend related to fire loss. The receipts may be needed later by the insurance company and for verifying losses claimed on your income tax.
- Notify your mortgage company of the fire.
Fires in your home can be an overwhelming experience SERVPRO of Kendall County can help you and your family navigate through this difficult time.
So, your home floods, or have had a recent fire. What happens to all your property that isn't ruined, but need the items to be taken out of the home for cleaning or to be stored? At SERVPRO of Kendall County we have a roughly 10,000 square foot temperature-controlled warehouse with vaults to keep your furniture, valuables, etc. We have content employees that will have all your items cleaned and properly stored. We clean items on site, smoke and soot removal are all services we provide. Our employees enter every single item into a program, so that you will know where your property is at all times and you will have access to your property when necessary. Along with restoration, we are a full-service Content cleaning and management company.
Summer Fun and Bonfires
Before building a fire, you should make sure that it is safe and permissible to build the fire. Though there are a number of factors to consider, a general rule is that campfires should not be built when wind speeds are above 15 mph. Campfires are at lower risk of spreading when it is raining, the ground is wet or the temperature is low. In severely dry conditions, governmental authorities may ban all burning. A quick call to a park ranger, fire department or the police should help you to determine if there is a burning ban.
It is important that you make certain that the campfire is fully extinguished before leaving the fire or going to sleep. Large chunks of wood will burn for a long period of time and should not be added to the fire late at night. When putting the fire out, you should knock the wood down flat on the ground. Water should be poured over the fire and the coals and wood turned on the wet ground to extinguish both sides. Only after the fire is cool to the touch is it safe to be left alone.
Checking Your Smoke Detector…
SERVPRO of Kendall County believes in Safety First
The National Fire Protection Association’s (NFPA) survey data shows that the public has many misconceptions about smoke alarms, which may put them at increased risk in the event of a home fire. For example, only a small percentage of people know how old their smoke alarms are, how many they should actually have in their homes or how often they need to be replaced. NFPA focuses on these key messages:
- Smoke alarms should be replaced every 10 years, regardless of battery changing.
- Make sure you know how old all the smoke alarms are in your home.
- To find out how old a smoke alarm is, look at the date of manufacture on the back of the alarm; the alarm should be replaced 10 years from that date.
Here’s how to check:
- Remove the smoke alarm from the wall/ceiling.
- Look at the back of the alarm for the date of manufacture
- Smoke alarms should be replaced 10 years from the date of manufacture
- Put the alarm back on the ceiling/wall if it is less than 10 years old.
- Install smoke alarms in every bedroom, outside each separate sleeping area, and on every level of the home, including the basement. Larger homes may need more alarms. For the best protection, make sure all smoke alarms are interconnected. When one sounds, they all sound.
- Test smoke alarms at least once a month by pushing the test button
- If the smoke alarm sounds, get outside/ go to your outside meeting place. ( Preplan with children so they are aware of what to do.)
- A closed door may slow the spread of smoke, heat & fire
- Call the fire department from a cell phone or neighbor’s phone. Stay outside until the fire department says it’s safe to go back inside.
- Practice your home fire drill twice a year. Conduct one at night and one during the day with everyone in your home, and practice different ways out.
- Teach children how to escape on their own in case you can't help.
- Make sure the number on your home is clearly marked and easy for the fire department to find. Some people prefer to paint numbers on curbs- ask your local City Council for more information.
- Once you get outside, stay outside. Never go back inside a burning building.
Firefighters are also encouraging smokers to make sure they throw out butts and ashes correctly because it only takes something small to spark a fire if the conditions are dry.