Home is where the heart is, and hence you need to make sure that there is no potential damage to the property both from inside and outside. Every year there are thousands of people who lose their lives because of house fires, and if we talk about the financial loss, the damage is in billions of dollars. Even though there has been a substantial decrease in the number of casualties compared to previous years, it is still too big of a number for something that is preventable to a lot of extents. And the strange part is that most of these fires are caused by something we generally consider to be safe like cigarettes, stove burner or a water heater to name a few.
Many of us consider our homes to be safe havens for us as well as our children. Surprisingly, there could be genuine dangers within the property as well. A home fire could be among the top disastrous devastation’s you could imagine and poor judgment, hasty actions or carelessness. It does not happen all the time that the fire department would be able to respond to home fires immediately even though they make their best efforts. While mistakes are bound to happen if you incorporate safety habits, the likelihood of you or any of your loved ones facing the fire tragedy could be almost eliminated. Let us explore some of the fire prevention tips with which you could place everyone in the house at least risk.
Fire alarms are considered as your best buddies in the event of a fire at your place. According to studies, more than 60% of the casualties due to fire happen in residences where there is no smoke alarm installed. In other cases, many people die as a result of the alarm not being in fully functional condition. The issues could be related to batteries like poor battery connections, empty or a dead battery. We normally ignore the importance of fire alarms at our homes and often do not value the importance of the equipment which could potentially save a life. If you implement the following fire prevention tips, it is less likely that you will face a deadly fire at your place:
• There are different kinds of fire alarms available in the market; some are good at detecting flaming fires while others are smarter in the detection of smoldering fires. Your best option is to go with an alarm device that uses both the technologies.
• Since bedrooms are the rest areas at our homes, try to install a fire alarm in all the bedrooms. If you have a multi-floor property with basement, then make sure that an alarm is installed in the basement and at least in one place on both the floors.
• Make sure that the alarms are tested periodically, say at least once every month. If it doesn’t seem to work, replace the batteries and if there are issues with the battery, do not hesitate in replacing the alarm as it could go a long way in saving a life.
• Even if the alarms are in working condition, check to see if you could replace them after a certain number of years to make sure you always have an equipment that always works.
• A lot of people tend to turn off the alarm while they cook. Do not make this mistake as cooking is cited as one of the top reasons for the home fires. If there is smoke coming out of the cooking area, turn on the vent fan rather than switching off the life-saving device.
• With advancements in technology, there are alarms that work with vibrations as well as those that have strobe light options. So even if you have someone who is physically impaired at your place, using these devices could help tremendously.
If you live in a multi-story residence or a single story house with a basement, you might want to have an escape ladder at your place. While you are considering to buy these ladders, make sure there are standoffs; in other words, check to make sure that there is enough space for the foot to move without any possibility of slipping. Also, there are different sizes of ladders available in the market which suit different home styles; hence choose accordingly that best suits your needs. Load testing is another aspect you need to consider before purchasing an escape ladder. Make sure it is adequately tested with heavy loads such as 1000 pounds to avoid any falls during emergencies. Even if you have guest rooms art your place, have a ladder for each of the rooms, and it wouldn’t harm if you inform the guests about the same.
Fire extinguishers should not be ignored. People generally tend to misunderstand the proper usage of fire extinguishers and use it on all kinds of fire; in fact, it should only be used for fires which are smaller in magnitude. And if the fire gets bigger, avoid implementing heroic activities and try to vacate the area as soon as possible. It is always a good idea to place these extinguishers in areas where the likelihood of fire is more than other places. Locations in the home where the fire extinguisher should be placed are in kitchen and garage spaces. Try to look for an ABC classified extinguisher when you decide to spend some money for it.
Whenever there is a fire, the size amplifies exponentially, and hence everyone at the house needs to know how to use an extinguisher in emergency situations. But unfortunately, many of the Floridians do not know the exact way of using them even when they have it in their homes. Let us explore some of the best ways of using the fire extinguisher.
• The most important thing is to determine if you can handle the high levels of stress while using the fire using the extinguisher. If it’s too big, do not think twice before vacating the area along with everyone else in the vicinity.
• Avoid placing yourself in a situation where there is smoke in the room, and you are in one corner with just the extinguisher for your assistance. Try to escape in a way where you position yourself on your back.
• If you could extinguish the fire, then try aiming the nozzle to the bottom of the fire and not the top portions. Also, squeeze the trigger appropriately to make sure that the agent in proper quantities is released.
And last but not the least, make sure that there is an escape plan at your place. People tend to ignore this and when everyone in the household is present, discuss and come up with an escape plan. Walk through each of the rooms, identify the high-risk areas and make sure that everyone is aware of the actual physical location of the fire extinguishers. Try to assign a place outside the property as a meeting area and once all of this is laid out, try to practice at least twice a year to make sure everyone is well aware of the plan.
Another important factor is to keep in mind the insurance coverage for these kinds of emergencies. Discuss the possibilities with your insurance agent or public adjuster and get the insurance coverage that would best suit your requirements. In many situations, it is often a hassle to claim the insurance, and this is where public adjusters come into the picture. The public adjusters mainly represent the insurance policyholders to make sure that they get what they are entitled to in a much smoother fashion. Lastly, all of this might seem quite overwhelming, but with a proper set of safety prevention tips, much of it could be avoided without reaching the next stage.