When a fire alarm goes off, you could potentially have only a couple minutes to safely evacuate your home. While closed doors can help to slow down the spread of smoke and flames, time is still of the essence to get everyone outside as quickly as possible. In addition to having adequate smoke detectors installed on every level of your home and outside of every sleeping area, it is important to create a home evacuation plan. The fire restoration experts at Entrusted have compiled some tips to help you create an escape plan that will get everyone in your home evacuated quickly and safely.
- Include everyone in your home in planning your escape plan. Conduct a walk-through of your home, inspecting all possible exits including doors and windows. Households that have young children should consider drawing up a floor plan, illustrating two different ways to get out of every room.
- Walk through your escape plan, to ensure that all escape routes are clear and that doors and windows can be opened easily.
- Select an outside meeting place (i.e., mailbox, neighbor’s house, stop sign, etc.) that is a safe distance from your home where everyone will meet after escaping the home. Make sure that your meeting place is indicated on your escape plan.
- Check outside to see that your house number is clearly visible from the street to make it easy for emergency personnel to find your home.
- If you have infants, older adults or family members with mobility limitations, make sure that there is a family member assigned to assist them in the event of an emergency. Be sure to have a backup person assigned in case the first person is not home at the time.
- If any windows or doors in your home are equipped with security bars, check to make sure they have an emergency release device that allows them to be opened immediately in the event of an emergency.
Once you have established an emergency escape plan, put your plan to the test!
- Be sure to practice your fire escape plan at least twice a year, making each drill as realistic as possible.
- Make arrangements for anyone in your home who has a disability.
- Let children master the escape plan before holding a practice drill at night.
- Teach children to choose the escape route that is going to be the safest and fastest for them to get out.
Having a home escape plan can be the difference between life and death. If you and your family do experience a house fire, Entrusted’s experts in fire restoration can help restore your home back to livable conditions.