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Home Fire Safety Tips

Sat, Feb 24, 2018 at 3:35PM

Home Fire Safety Tips

While fire provides light and warmth, it can also lead to catastrophic consequences when allowed to blaze out of control. In fact, according to Ready.gov (a safety website of the U.S. government), it takes just five minutes for a home to be totally engulfed in flames.

Given the fast and furious nature of fire, it’s important to plan for the best, while always being prepared for the worst. Follow these home fire safety tips to protect property, pets, and loved ones:

Plan and Prepare

Every second counts in a disaster. That’s why you should create a preparedness plan that includes evacuation.

Make sure everyone in the household is on the same page and is following the same rules. At least twice a year (once every six months), you should do a “practice run” to monitor your family’s response and make necessary modifications. One of these practice runs should be performed in the dark (or with eyes closed), so all members of the household can become familiar with exiting in minimal or zero lighting.

Emergency preparations should include locating at least two ways out of each room, keeping in mind that windows can be used as an exit if necessary. As part of the plan, ensure windows open properly (not stuck or painted shut).

Secondary exits should be equipped with a collapsible ladder or reliable means by which to reach the ground. Flimsy structures such as rain gutters should not be regarded as viable escape assistance options.

Install a properly-functioning smoke alarm in every room and test the alarm at least twice a year. Fire extinguishers should be placed at various locations throughout the home. Make sure every member of the household knows where all fire extinguishers are located.

Finally, consider visiting a fire station, so children can become familiar with firefighters, and won’t hide in the event of an emergency.

Practice Prevention

Most fires can be prevented by practicing basic safety rules. That includes:

  • never leave cooking food unattended
  • never leave fireplaces, candles, or space heaters unattended
  • keep all combustible materials away from heat sources
  • don’t store gasoline or other fuel in unsafe containers
  • properly position barbecue grills (at least 10 feet from siding, deck railings, eaves, and over-hanging branches)
  • keep fire pits safely away from structures
  • if you smoke, do so outside, and always ensure butts are completely extinguished
  • replaced frayed and worn electrical wiring
  • teach children that fire is not a plaything

It’s also wise to know how to use fire extinguishers. You won’t have time to learn during a fire event.

Ideally, you should keep original important documents in a fireproof safe or a secure off-site location. This includes birth certificates, social security cards, passports, insurance information, medical records and prescriptions, and more.

Safeguard Property

Fires and other disasters can be emotionally-traumatic and life-changing. While it’s not possible to prevent all fire scenarios, there are ways to lessen the impact. For instance, homeowner’s insurance is a great way to protect your property and belongings.

We offer insurance solutions for all your personal and business needs. From homeowner’s to flood, business and commercial, auto, tree care, risk management, and more, our qualified and knowledgeable agents have been proudly helping Florida families since 2002. Contact us today to learn the best options for you and your family.

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