- Every day in the United States, 1,500 homes burn.
- 6,500 people die and 280,000 are injured in home fires each year.
- Home fire fatalities account for approximately 78% of all deaths by fire.
- During the lifetime of average household, chances are 2 to 1 that there will be an accidental fire.
In the Event of a Fire, You Could Lose Your Life, If You Are Not Prepared.
Smoke is a killer. 8 out of 10 fire fatalities are due to smoke inhalation. Smoke and heat rise, the coolest and freshest air will be found near the floor. Stay low, crawl on your hands and knees, cover your mouth with a cloth and take short breaths.
Adequate smoke detectors are a necessity to provide sufficient early warning in the event of a fire. The majority of fire deaths occur at night, while everyone is sleeping. The bodies senses are dulled, so victims are not even aware a fire has started.
If you do not already have smoke detectors in your home, contact the Plantation Fire Department Prevention Division for information and installation suggestions at 954-797-2150.
- If your smoke detector is located in the hallway outside your bedroom area, sleep with your bedroom door open. If you have a smoke detector inside your bedroom, you can sleep with you door closed and still have early detection of the fire, should it start inside your room.
- If you awake to an alarm or suspect fire at night, roll out of bed, crawl over to the door. If the door is open and smoke is pouring in, quickly close the door. This will hold back the smoke and heat for up to 20 minutes. If the bedroom door is closed, test the door before opening it. Feel the door with your hand for heat. If the door is hot or smoke is entering, do not open it. Use your emergency exit. If the door is cool and no smoke is leaking in, open the door cautiously. Brace your shoulder against the door and open it slowly. Be prepared to slam it shut if smoke or heat rush in.
- Do not waste time gathering valuables or getting dressed. GET OUT! Cases have been cited, where children have reentered burning homes to rescue a pet or a toy. Make sure they get out and stay out.
- Assign someone, before a fire occurs, to assist infants, elderly and those needing additional assistance.
- If you are trapped in an upstairs bedroom, try to prevent smoke from entering the room. Stuff blankets or sheets around the door. Open the window a few inches to get fresh air. Hang something brightly colored out the window to attract attention. Await rescue, if it becomes impossible to wait, hang from the window sill by your hands and drop to the ground. This will lessen the distance you will have to fall. Never attempt to exit from a window that is above the second floor.
- If you must break window to exit, make sure to turn your head away from the window as you strike it with a large object, such as a chair. Clear as much of the jagged glass as possible from the window. Throw a blanket or rug over the window sill to protect against broken glass, then exit from the window.
- Go immediately to the predetermined outside meeting place and wait for other family members or house occupants.
- If you live in a high-rise building, do not use the elevator to escape. Only use the stairs to exit the building.
Hold regular fire drills in your home. The more you practice, the better prepared you will become escaping in times of emergency. Remember, test your smoke detectors monthly.