According to the National Fire Prevention Association, a home fire is reported in America every 83 seconds. A fire can be a devastating experience for you and your family. Implementing a DIY fire prevention program to keep your home and family safe is now easier than ever with a few easy steps and the many high-quality products available to consumers. Whether you’re a regular handyman or a newbie DIY-er, some simple tools and know-how are all you need to get started.
Smoke detectors play a vital role in protecting against fire-related death and injury. Most people are probably already familiar with how smoke detectors work, but proper installation is important in order for them to work correctly. Installing smoke detectors is the first step in a good DIY fire prevention plan. But a smoke detector that doesn’t work won’t be of any use during an actual fire. Be sure to test your smoke detectors once a month and replace batteries once a year. Do you hear that chirping sound? That means the batteries are low and need to be replaced. Consider investing in long-life smoke detectors with batteries that can last for more than 10 years.
A fire extinguisher can be handy for containing small fires or controlling a fire until help arrives. A multi-purpose extinguisher is ideal for home use, and is available at your local home improvement or discount store. The National Fire Protection Association suggests choosing an extinguisher that carries the label of an independent testing laboratory. Place the extinguisher near an exit in an easily-accessible place, like a closet or cabinet. Read the manufacturer’s instructions and make sure that everyone in your family can locate and properly use the extinguisher.
Your DIY fire prevention program should include an escape plan with at least two different exits from each room and a meeting point outside the home. Remove any obstructions from doors and windows. Take special consideration for anyone in your home who may have limited mobility or a disability, like children and elderly people. Practice your escape plan with your kids twice a year.
Remember those “Stop, Drop, and Roll” drills? Teaching your children at an early age about the dangers of playing with fire and emergency procedures for escaping a fire can help keep them safe. Likewise, try to educate yourself about fire prevention and any new fire prevention products and procedures. Fire is an important part of our daily lives, from cooking our food to heating our homes. With the right tips, tools, and caution, a DIY fire prevention plan can keep your family and home safe from fires.
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