Protecting your home against fire involves planning. Here are some precautions you can take to help you protect you and your family.
Never leave small children alone in the home, even for a minute.
Install smoke alarms in furnace and sleeping areas. Check batteries once a month. It is best to use alarms with long-life batteries, but if these are not available, change the batteries at least yearly.
Plan several escape routes from each room in the house. Plan a place to meet right after leaving the house.
Conduct home fire drills so everyone knows how to get out in an emergency.
Do not smoke in bed.
Dispose of cigarette butts, matches, and ashes with care.
Keep matches and lighters away from children.
Be sure your gas water heater is off the ground. Spilled flammable liquids will be ignited by the pilot light.
When using candles, place them on a sturdy surface out of reach of children. Never leave a candle burning unattended.
Place a barrier around open flames.
Do not wear loose-fitting clothing near a stove, fireplace, or open space heater.
Have your heating system checked and cleaned yearly.
Check electric appliances and cords regularly for wear or loose connections.
Use only 15-ampere fuses for lighting circuits. Never use a substitute for a fuse.
Place fire extinguishers around the home where the risk of fire is greatest—in the kitchen and furnace room and near the fireplace.
In case of fire
Get everyone outside right away. Go to your planned meeting place.
Do not stop to dress or put out the fire. (Most deaths occur from suffocation due to hot fumes and smoke, not from direct burning.)
Call the fire department from a neighbor's house or mobile phone.