About two months ago, Adeline came home from school and emphatically told me, “if you are on fire, you STOP, DROP and ROOOLLLL.” At just three, Adeline often amazes me with how much she retains, but this lesson on fire safety was an especially important one.
That lesson at school gave us the opportunity to talk more about fire safety as a family. We went more in-depth with Elias after some firefighters visited his school (and he came home with a cool hat!).
This weekend we talked about different ways to get out of the house if there was a fire, including the windows and the front door. Then they hugged and gave me cheesy smiles and I died from their affection toward each other.
This week is Fire Prevention Week. It's a week I might have overlooked in the past, but since becoming a blogger for Kidde, I have become so inspired to share useful information for parents to better protect their families against fire and CO poisoning. I realize that these posts might not be as fun as a party post or a craft DIY, but safety is another important aspect of creating a life well-crafted.
- Smoke alarms should be installed on each level of your home and near sleeping areas. Smoke alarms should be tested monthly and replaced every 10 years. I love Kidde's Worry-Free Smoke Alarms because they don't need to have their batteries replaced (they are powered by sealed-in, 10-year lithium batteries) and don't have an annoying chirp like so many other alarms do.
- Fire extinguishers should be within reach on every level of your home. We have one in our front closet, which is next to the living room and dining room, as well as one under the kitchen sink. Upstairs, we have one in each bedroom.
- Replace fire extinguishers every 12 years. Remember when I learned to use a fire extinguisher? It made such a huge impact on me that now I often check fire extinguisher levels and expiration dates. Just last week I saw a fire extinguisher in the bathroom at a restaurant and I picked up it to see if it was expired (it wasn't).
- It is important to remember the acronym PASS for proper use of a fire extinguisher (pull the pin, aim at base of the fire, squeeze the handle and sweep at base of the flame). I recommend buying one for the sole purpose of using it (in your yard or driveway) to get a sense of what it is like. But, remember – there is no “test spray” for a fire extinguisher. Once you spray it, even if it’s just a little bit, it can’t be put away to be used again later. But it is worth spending the money to have the experience.
- Your family should have a fire escape plan. We have ladders in the upstairs bedrooms and several exits out the lower level of our home. This escape plan worksheet is a great tool to use with your kids to talk about if your home had a fire in it.
I hope that this post inspires you to evaluate how fire safe your home is and make changes, if necessary. For more considerations, check out this free Fire Safety Checklist printable.