The American Red Cross recently announced a national campaign that aims to reduce deaths and injuries from fires in the home. The goal is to reduce these numbers by over 25% in the next five years, and this is an absolutely plausible goal as our society grows smarter about fire safety. Technological advances such as hard wired smoke detectors, home sprinkler systems, and updated fire codes and standards all provide us with a much better chance to survive a fire compared to previous generations. That being said, there still are steps we should all take to further our personal fire prevention repertoire, and some of our favorite fire prevention tips and tools are outlined below.
- Home Sprinkler Systems – With the costs for residential fire-protection systems dropping, there’s less and less of an argument being made against these life-saving investments. Misfiring sprinklers is a common fear that simply isn’t rational anymore, and may be the last hurdle as people become educated. Insurance companies often offer discounts for installing them as well, which can help recoup some of the costs over time.
- Smoke Alarms – At the very least you should have working smoke alarms on every level of your home, in the bedrooms, in the basement, and outside sleeping areas. If you don’t have hard-wired smoke detectors, be sure to check them once a month and change the batteries yearly. The NFPA also recommends replacing smoke alarms every 10 years.
- Plan & Preparation – The Red Cross found that fire experts agree that you may have as little as two minutes to escape a fire. This means that every second counts, and could mean the difference between life and death. Have a home escape plan that you discuss with everyone in your family. Your plan should include at least two ways out of every room if possible, and a meeting place that is a safe distance from your home. Be sure to practice this home fire drill and highlight any safety tips (the NFPA has an extensive safety tip sheet).
With home fires comprising the majority of the disasters the Red Cross responds to each year, it makes sense to do what you can to be ready for a worst case scenario. Installing home fire sprinkler systems, ensuring your smoke alarms are properly installed and in working order, as well as having a plan prepared that you practice with your family will give you the best chance to avoid a potential catastrophe.
As we’ve mentioned in our previous New York sprinkler legislation article, we offer Talco Fire’s line of 13D packaged pump systems. This includes the 350 or 450 gallon Home Hydrant storage tank that has provided home sprinkler solutions with minimal square footage. If you’re interested in learning more, be sure to contact us by using the phone number at the bottom of the page.